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Grant number: FT-57185-09

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FT-57185-09

Caitrin Lynch
Franklin W. Olin College of Engineering (Needham, MA 02492-1200)

Work, Retirement, and Community: Changing Social and Economic Landscapes in the United States

This project engages questions about work, aging, community, social values, and business profitability in today's global economy by examining the motivations and experiences of workers and employers at Vita Needle Company, a suburban Boston factory where the average worker is 75 years old. In today's economic downturn, many U.S. senior citizens seek work that simultaneously satisfies their social and economic needs. Vita has received international recognition for employing older workers. Based on three years of ethnographic research at Vita, the book that I will write promises to alter how we think about work, retirement, and community at this critical time when social and economic changes in the U.S. and Europe challenge us to examine our assumptions about the value of work, the experiences of retirement, and what constitutes successful aging. An NEH Summer Stipend will enable me to complete the research and to begin the writing phase.

[Grant products]

Project fields:
Anthropology

Program:
Summer Stipends

Division:
Research Programs

Total amounts:
$6,000 (approved)
$6,000 (awarded)

Grant period:
6/1/2009 – 7/31/2009