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Eurasian Journal of Anthropology
Volume 6, Issue 1 (June 2015), pp. 24-38

DOI: 10.12973/ejanth.2014.00043a

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Research Article

Published online on Jun 01, 2016

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An ethnographic study of abandoned and destitute older people living in a specialized centre in city of Gaziantep, Turkey

Ali Rıza Can


The increasing numbers of residential settings for older and retired people in industrial societies offer anthropologists a remarkable opportunity to observe the aging in process. Aging is a natural process, and it points to a different meaning in each culture and societies. This study was able to identify a number of important factors relating to aging including a) how God is important for elder people, b) how their social relation to each other is, c) what kind of factors affect their social relations, and d) why the effects of social change is a key concern for old people. I found three important key themes. The first key theme supported some researchers’ opinions that religion plays a more important role in old age. This second theme is also stated by other researchers, old people think that the social networks and relations were much better in the olden days. The last theme is the social relations in old age. Some researchers said that elder people are friendly and they like to spend time together. However, at Gaziantep Destitute Centre, most of the participants reported that they did not like spending time together with the other residents.

Key words: Aging, residential care, social relations in old age

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