Grigorieva I. A. Elderly women: over the hill — age- and gender-wise, p.5-18

Author focuses on the features of “prescribed” scenarios of women’ aging in modern Russia. The main goal of the article is to move forward in understanding the sociology of aging and opportunities for social inclusion of older women. This seems to be of much lesser interest for scholars than problems of youth. The topic is located at the intersection of sociology of in-dividual/personality, gender sociology, age psychology, social anthropology, social work, etc. We proceed from the assumption that older women are subjected to double stigmatization — both as women and as the old. The article analyzes the directions social expectations are changing in, how the identity of women is being formed at the present time. Today, the socio-economic context of aging could be described as consisting of the increase in life expectancy, reduction in resources to ensure old age and uncertainty about the future.
Removal of ageism at institutional level and in public discourse means a radical change in the paradigm of aging. This applies to both subjective identity and social prescriptions. In-volving older women in more diverse living conditions requires critical rethinking of ageism rooted at the institutional level. In Russia both the proportion of older women and the differ-ence in the average life expectancy of women and men are increasing. These trends can’t but negatively influence women’s low social status in the old age.
Possibilities to realize the late age productively, to continue professional employment or active public work, i. e. not to pass the border of “social old age”, is mainly exercised by highly qualified women. At the same time, a popular idea of active aging not only freed women from social stereotypes and restrictions but obliged them to constantly maintain definite physical form in order to look younger. Therefore, there is no reason to believe that social regulations are softening and the situation of older women is improving noticeably.
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