Managing a positive impression: Self-presentation among octogenarians

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This paper addresses self-presentation among home-dwelling octogenarians living in the Faroe Islands. The purpose was to examine how older adults make meaning of ageing in interaction and examine the possible impact of social and cultural norms on this meaning making practice. The study is based on social constructionism. Interviews were conducted with both married couples and individual men and women during the spring of 2019. The interviewees projected a positive impression of life as older adults. They used humour to cover up health problems, and downward social comparison with others to enhance their own active lifestyle. They included third-party compliments to enhance the impression of appearing ‘younger’ than their chronological age, thus reconciling the misalignment between age norms and lived experience.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Aging Studies
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2021


  • Active ageing
  • Everyday life
  • Impression management
  • Social constructionism


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