ERIC Number: ED293555
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1987-May-21
Reference Count: N/A
The Equation and the Parable, or The Two Kinds of Information.
Dosa, Marta L.
Focusing on the role of information in the planning and managing of intergenerational programs, this paper argues that two types of information--formal/objective and personal/subjective--must be addressed in relation to the problems of aging members of our society. These two types of information are characterized via illustrative stories: the "equation," which pertains to scientific information and our responsibility for its use, misuse, or manipulation; and the "parable," which refers to personal information expressing cultural forces, poetic vision, narratives, and fantasy. In the case of formal/objective information, it is suggested that there needs to be more effective dissemination of current information useful to both the elderly and their support networks, as well as greater cooperation between gerontological researchers and practitioners to make more relevant information available through health and social programs, education, and libraries. In the case of personal/subjective information, it is argued that an intuitive understanding of the cultural and spiritual needs of older persons and empathy in interpersonal communication are as important as the provision of factual information. It is suggested that the ability to make contact with people at the cultural level with stories, humor, and fantasy, is an important way to interact while preserving the identity and dignity of the aged individual. (42 references) (EW)
Publication Type: Information Analyses; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Grandreading Workshop on Intergenerational Program Development (Canandaigua, NY, may 21, 1987).