Date of Award

1-1-2014

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Ph.D.

Department

Human Communications

First Advisor

Elizabeth A. Suter

Keywords

Family, Gender, Grandfathers, Identity, Life-Span Communication, Masculinity

Abstract

The purpose of this study is to investigate the construction of a masculine identity through a qualitative analysis of personal letters written by an aging man over the last two decades of his life (age 68-89). Symbolic interaction and life-span communication are the guiding frameworks behind the development of the research questions and the subsequent analyses. Research question one asks: What themes emerge from the personal letters written by an aging man? The following two themes emerged: a) relationality, and b) age and aging. Research question two asks: What do the metaphors that emerge from personal letters reveal about the construction of an aging male identity? A metaphoric analysis produced two conceptual metaphors: a) aging is a tolerable inconvenience, and b) aging is a blessing of time. Overall, the findings from this study suggest the construction of an aging male identity that is highly relational and indelibly shaped by age and aging. The findings contribute to family communication by providing insight into the lived experience of an older man who values the relationships in his life as well as the aging process.

Provenance

Recieved from ProQuest

Rights holder

K. Tiffani Baldwin

File size

192 p.

File format

application/pdf

Language

en

Discipline

Communication

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