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Rural Ageing and Equality
Pages: 311 - 328
Swansea University Author: Vanessa Burholt
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This chapter draws on data from the ESRC funded research programme Grey and Pleasant Land? An Interdisciplinary Exploration of the Connectivity of Older People in Rural Civic Society (GaPL). It examines ageing and inequality in rural areas of the United Kingdom and explores the intersectionality of...
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This chapter draws on data from the ESRC funded research programme Grey and Pleasant Land? An Interdisciplinary Exploration of the Connectivity of Older People in Rural Civic Society (GaPL). It examines ageing and inequality in rural areas of the United Kingdom and explores the intersectionality of rural area with age, gender, marital status, health, and socio-economic status in relation to distribution of resources, recognition, and representation of rural older people. Rural areas are typologized in terms of their population density and nearness to urban locations; level of deprivation; resource dependency; and population turnover/stability. We explore the roles of rural areas are in relation to the distribution of material resources of older people. We capture recognition through social status by the extent one can meet certain lifestyle expectations, thereby examining the relationship between rural area, and participation in the social life of communities. We capture representation by examining civic engagement in the community, but also the degree to which elected officials represent the voices of rural elders which we operationalize as trust in local officials and the strength of local concerns. Overall, we observed that participants living in the most remote and deprived areas had fewer material resources, greater levels of poverty, lower levels of social participation and resources, lower levels of civic participation, and trust in local official, but more local concerns than those in the more affluent and accessible areas. We conclude that the most rural and remote areas are misrecognized in popular, media and policy conceptions of the countryside
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