The effect of political generation on identity and social change: Age cohort consequences

Robyn Lewis Brown, Deana A. Rohlinger

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


In this article, we explore how political generation affects the ways in which diverse individuals come together and change their social and personal identities. Drawing on 52 in-depth interviews with members of the Red Hat Society, we show that women draw on their political generation, and the gains of the women’s movement specifically, to oppose cultural constructions of aging. The Red Hat Society provides a “free space” for women to foster a collective identity that both visibly challenges aging norms and provides its members new standards for self-approval. We conclude by highlighting the importance of focusing on political generation to understand collective action over the life course and call for more scholarship on the function of political generation in social change.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)96-111
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Women and Aging
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 3 2016

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2016 Taylor & Francis.


  • Age identity
  • generational change
  • social movement participation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Gender Studies
  • Geriatrics and Gerontology


Dive into the research topics of 'The effect of political generation on identity and social change: Age cohort consequences'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this