Later Adults’ Cultural Life Scripts of Middle and Later Adulthood
Aging, Neuropsychology, and Cognition
The cultural life script (CLS) refers to expected prototypical life events, often including life transitions overwhelmingly occurring at ages 11-30. This study outlined CLS events at ages after the majority of these events typically occur. Participants, age 38-76, nominated events they expected a person of their age to experience in the future. Participants rated each event’s valence, importance, prevalence, and expected age of occurrence. Events were coded into three categories: the normative CLS for events listed by previous CLS studies, offspring’s CLS for experiencing CLS events of offspring, and later adulthood CLS for other events nominated by at least 4% of participants. Results suggest scripted events highlighting positivity and change. Offspring’s CLS was more positive and occurred earlier than others. Correlations emerged between event characteristics and well-being. Results affirm the prominence of transitions in memory, and suggest ways that older adults maintain well-being despite a cultural narrative that emphasizes decline.
Grysman, Azriel, and Sarah Dimakis. "Later Adults’ Cultural Life Scripts of Middle and Later Adulthood." Aging, Neuropsychology, and Cognition 25, no. 3 (2018): 406-426. https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/13825585.2017.1319458