Subjective realities of older male farmers: Self-perceptions of ageing and work

Judith Gullifer, Anthony Thompson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Citations (Scopus)
536 Downloads (Pure)


The research focused on the experiences and identity of aged male farmers in relation to farming and ageing using a phenomenological design. A sample of eight Australian farmers ranging in age from 65 to 80 years participated in audio taped interviews. The matic analysis revealed four prominent themes, 1) the narrative of 'toughness'. 2) a down-to-earth view of ageing, 3) attachment to place and 4) the importance of feeling productive and useful. The themes are potently portrayed in selected comments from the interviewees and linked to relevant issues in the ageing literature. They reveal the complex nature of ageing, in a world where masculinity and agrarian values have been socially constructed and identity is regulated accordingly. It is suggested that underlying the manifest themes was the psychological dynamic of nourishing the identity to maintain a positive self-concept. Findings imply that for many aged male farmers, their lifestyle has engendered particular perspectives that are integral to their adaptations to ageing.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)80-97
Number of pages18
JournalRural Society
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2006


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