Accepted Paper:

Aging between places: creating inclusive communities though photovoice partnerships  


Eric Asaba (Karolinska Institutet)
Margarita Mondaca (Karolinska Institutet)

Paper short abstract:

Two photovoice illustrations will be used to explore possibilities and challenges of creating a sense of place in later life as a migrant.

Paper long abstract:

The aim of this paper is to explore the possibilities and challenges of social dynamics among elder migrants through photovoice projects in Sweden and Japan. Migration involves moving from one place to another, and is something that has become more and more common during the past decades. As a result more people today are growing older in a country other than their country of origin, which fundamentally challenges conventional concepts and methods based on an ideology of continuity and stability often applied in existing aging research. The utilization of socially transformative methods such as photovoice allows the building of partnerships with people. In these projects partnerships were formed with elders from diverse cultural backgrounds where participants were involved in the construction of the research agendas, shaping questions and creating an open dialogue through a combination of visual and verbal stories. This is relevant because it puts the expression of ethnicity and culture in friction with otherwise reinforced stereotypes and generalizations about the elder immigrant. It places a focus on agency from less individualistic perspective, contribution, and multiplicity rather than xenophobic stereotypes, socio-economic burden, and one-dimensional images of the elder migrant. Two examples will be used to illustrate how community resources can be used to create a sense of place in later life; the first builds on work with elder migrants in Sweden and the second with elder migrants in Japan. Concepts, methods, and challenges around photovoice applications will be discussed.

Panel P29
Aging as a placed experience: the fluidity of different modes of relationships