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Les représentations médiatiques de la vieillesse dans la société française contemporaine : ambiguïtés des discours et réalités sociales

Abstract : This doctoral thesis combines historical and communication approaches, focusing on how old age is portrayed in contemporary French society. Whether through the analysis of political speeches, commercials, or by studying cinematic and literary characters, we discover that there is a consistent approach in the portrayal of old age. This doctoral research demonstrates why these portrayals result in an historical evolution, in an ideology of « youthism », as well as reflecting current society’s views. The assumption elaborated in this paper is that Western society conceals old age, which it deems unpleasant to look at, and which is therefore hidden from the general public. In doing so, millions of elderly individuals are ignored by social speeches and the media. We will prove that the reason for this lies, on the one hand with the “modern fear of ageing”, and on the other, dialectically, in “youthism”, an ideology advocating an individualist and proactive values, and above all the idea of citizens as consumers. We will raise more broadly the historical evolution of old age policy, and the notions of stigma, of « care giving centres », of « dependance » and of abuse.
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Yannick Sauveur. Les représentations médiatiques de la vieillesse dans la société française contemporaine : ambiguïtés des discours et réalités sociales. Sciences de l'information et de la communication. Université de Bourgogne, 2011. Français. ⟨NNT : 2011DIJOL015⟩. ⟨tel-00665923⟩

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