The ageing of the global population has been well documented and accompanied by recognition of older people as a powerful consumer group, including as consumers of popular culture. Forms of popular culture including music, film, television, visual art and fashion have in turn influenced community attitudes towards ageing. This topic will consider the 'coming of the aged' - how marketing about and to the senior population over recent decades has produced wide-ranging representations of older age in Western popular culture. With a particular focus on film and television, and drawing on diverse examples from Pixar's animation Up to celebrity culture's preoccupation with 'agelessness', students will consider how popular culture offers opportunities to engage with and reflect on health, well-being, gender and other aspects of the complex experience of ageing in the 21st century.
The core objective of this topic is to develop an awareness of how ideas and attitudes about ageing are influenced by depictions of older people and age-related issues, including health concerns, in a range of popular culture forms. The aims of this topic are to: