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Ageing in Everyday LifeMaterialities and Embodiments$
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Stephen Katz

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9781447335917

Published to Policy Press Scholarship Online: January 2019

DOI: 10.1332/policypress/9781447335917.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM POLICY PRESS SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.policypress.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Policy Press, 2020. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in PPSO for personal use.date: 01 April 2020

Closer to touch: sexuality, embodiment and masculinity in older men’s lives

Closer to touch: sexuality, embodiment and masculinity in older men’s lives

Chapter:
(p.129) Seven Closer to touch: sexuality, embodiment and masculinity in older men’s lives
Source:
Ageing in Everyday Life
Author(s):

Linn J. Sandberg

Publisher:
Policy Press
DOI:10.1332/policypress/9781447335917.003.0007

This chapter explores touch as an essential aspect of ageing embodiment, which also has a significant impact on experiences of gendered and sexual embodiment in later life. Drawing on an empirical study with older Swedish men who were both interviewed and asked to write ‘body diaries’ about their everyday embodiment, the research argues that their narratives of touch constitute alternative representations of both male sexuality and ageing embodiment as phallic discourses inevitably signifying decline and decay. In recent years, the increasing emphases of sexuality as vital to the accomplishment of successful ageing often overlook the more complex nuances of older people’s experiences of sexuality and intimacy, which may involve loss, pain and illness as well as unbounded joys. In contrast, this chapter concludes that a turn to touch directs us to the simultaneous vulnerability and potential for pleasure and excitation in ageing embodiment.

Keywords:   masculinity, touch, sexuality, ageing, diaries

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