Older Women Who Work Resilience, Choice, and Change

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Format: Paperback
Pub. Date: 2020-09-30
Publisher(s): American Psychological Association
List Price: $63.99

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Older Women Who Work: Resilience, Choice, and Change provides one of the first in-depth examinations of women age 65 and older who have delayed retirement, exploring personal and career identity, social roles, and quality of life concerns.  

The seventeenth book in APA's Division 35 Psychology of Women series, this edited volume presents a rich array of qualitative and quantitative research on older women's experiences in the workplace. 

Chapter authors share insights about how organizational leaders can change societal structures to better support the motivations and needs of diverse older women in the workplace. 

The book also describes how consultants, educators, and mental health professionals can encourage development of personal grit, to help the growing numbers of older women exercise their right to opportunities and be adaptable in the face of employment challenges. 

Author Biography

Ellen Cole, PhD, is Professor of Psychology at the Sage Colleges where she teaches in the Counseling and Community Psychology graduate program. She is past-president of the Alaska Psychological Association and the Society for the Psychology of Women of the American Psychological Association (APA Division 35). In 2016 she received Division 35’s Florence L. Denmark Award for Contributions to Women and Aging. Dr. Cole works on several fronts to change the perception of aging from one that is medically driven to one that focuses on quality of life and celebration. She lives in Albany, NY. Visit her blog at 70Candles.com.
Lisa Hollis-Sawyer, PhD,
coordinates the Gerontology program at Northeastern Illinois University and is an Associate Professor in the Psychology Department. In 2014, she received an American Psychological Association (APA) Division 20 award on mentoring students in the field of gerontology and, in 2017, she received APA Division 35’s Florence L. Denmark award for her research over three decades on older women’s role transitions and quality of life outcomes. She is guided in professional life and community service to be an advocate for diverse aging women and older workers’ rights. Dr. Hollis-Sawyer lives in the Chicago, IL area. Follow her on Twitter: @LHollisSawyer.

Table of Contents


Series Foreword 

Mary Wyer

Bonnie R. Strickland



Ellen Cole and Lisa Hollis-Sawyer

 Part I: Personal and Career Identities for Older Women 

 1. From Striving to Thriving: How Facing Adversity Across the Lifespan Can Foster Workplace Resilience 

Ashley M. Stripling and Jodie Maccarrone 

 2. The Aging Woman Worker in a Lifespan Developmental Context 

Valory Mitchell 

 3. Shifting Values and Late Course Adjustments in the Careers of Older Women 

Lorraine Mangione, Kathi A. Borden, and Elizabeth Fuss 

 4. Work-Related Choice and Identity in Older Women 

Nicky J. Newton and Katherine M. Ottley 

 5. Plenty More at the Factory Gate: An Autoethnography of a Precarious Work (Life) in Progress

Jackie Goode 

 Part II: Societal Roles of Aging Women Workers 

 6. The Secret Poor Among Us: Older Women Who Work to Make Ends Meet 

Mary Gergen and Ellen Cole 

 7. Work-Life Balance and the Older Working Woman 

H. Lorraine Radtke and Janneke van Mens-Verhulst 

 8. What, Retire? Not Now--Maybe Not Ever 

Patricia A. O’Connor 

 9. "You're Too Young/Old for This": The Intersection of Ageism and Sexism in the Workplace 

Ruth V. Walker and Alexandria I. Zelin 

 Part III: Diversity and Personal Grit in the Workplace and Beyond 

 10. Appalachian Grit: Women and Work in West Virginia

Julie Hicks Patrick, Abigail M. Nehrkorn-Bailey, Michaela S. Clark, and Madeline M. Marello 

 11. Missions Continued: Contextualizing Older Women's Work Pursuits and Passions in Lifelong Journeys 

Niva Piran 

12. Older Immigrant Women Who Work: Building Resilience, Changing Perceptions and Policies 

Jasmin Tahmaseb McConatha and Frauke Schnell 

 13. Use It or Lose It: Older Women and Civic Engagement 

Lisa Hollis-Sawyer 

 Appendix: Employment Resources for Older Women 


 About the Editors 

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