Cultural Impact on Happiness and Subjective Well-Being of Older Adults

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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1273-1280
JournalIndian Journal of Health and Wellbeing
Volume5
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 2014
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Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

The number of older adults is increasing throughout the world. Old age has both positive and negative consequences. The changing society affects older people and their relationship within their families and communities, further affecting their well-being, which vary in different cultures. Although happiness as a state of mind is universal, it is important to understand the subjective well-being of older individuals within their cultural contexts. The objective of this study was to investigate the cultural differences amongst older adults from India and Britain in relation with happiness, subjective well-being and its contribution to the overall quality of life satisfaction, noting the gender differences as well. Semi-structured interviews were conducted on 10 older adults; 5 from Newcastle, Britain and 5 from New Delhi, India. Thematic analysts was applied, following the process set out by Braun and Clarke (2006). Four major themes were identified pertinent across all the data transcripts: Social connectedness, level of satisfaction and contentment, religiosity and values, strong feelings and changing culture. With the reference to role of culture, the findings demonstrated clear differences in feelings of happiness and the level of satisfaction towards subjective well-being m old age. Moderate gender effects were also found. Their views on all aspects of their complex experiences reflecting on their happiness and well-being were broadly canvassed. The implications of these findings and consideration of the methodology are discussed in full.