Social Aspects of Aging in Indigenous Communities

Jordan P. Lewis, Tuula Heinonen

Research output: Book/ReportBook


Social and structural changes affect the daily lives and quality of life of older Indigenous adults throughout the world. In many cases, older adults are no longer esteemed and valued as they were in the past. Their role as keepers and teachers of cultural knowledge and traditions has changed as family life has been transformed due to the effects of colonization but also due to social and economic changes. This book describes how older adults are meeting these challenges and finding strategies to survive, thrive, and contribute to their families, communities, and society. The geographic locations discussed in relation to Indigenous aging include Bangladesh, Chile, Canada, Finland, Ghana, India, Nigeria, New Zealand, North America, Sri Lanka, Taiwan, and Zambia. This book is organized into five different thematic sections concerning Indigenous cultural beliefs and views on aging; aging and social policy; the effects of social change on communities, families, and older adults; emotional and psychological issues; and the contributions of Indigenous older adults. The book also discusses the effects of colonization on older Indigenous people; the significance of cultural identity; challenges of social and economic transformation affecting Indigenous older persons and their families and communities; and evidence of resilience and strength in older adults’ survival strategies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
PublisherOxford University Press
Number of pages474
ISBN (Electronic)9780197677216
ISBN (Print)9780197677230
StatePublished - Jan 1 2023

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© Oxford University Press 2023. All rights reserved.


  • Aging internationally
  • Colonization
  • Cultural identity
  • Economic change
  • Family change
  • Health and well-being
  • Indigenous culture
  • Migration
  • Social transformation
  • Survival strategies


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