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ERIC Number: EJ1116747
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2016
Pages: 15
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0143-4632
Overaccommodation in a Singapore Eldercare Facility
Cavallaro, Francesco; Seilhamer, Mark Fifer; Chee, Yi Tian Felicia; Ng, Bee Chin
Journal of Multilingual and Multicultural Development, v37 n8 p817-831 2016
Numerous studies have shown that some speech accommodation in interactions with the elderly can aid communication. "Over"accommodaters, however, employing features such as high pitch, exaggerated prosody, and child-like forms of address, often demean, infantilise, and patronise elderly interlocutors rather than facilitate comprehension. According to the Communicative Predicament of Aging model, communication practices are determined by stereotypes of aging that are triggered in the minds of those interacting with the elderly. These stereotypes vary from culture to culture, and in Singapore, negative stereotypes of aging are prevalent, existing alongside traditional Confucian-influenced positive stereotypes. To date, no studies have examined whether or how stereotypes of aging might be manifested in interactions between younger and older Singaporeans. This investigation involved participant observation in a Singapore eldercare facility. Overaccommodation was indeed found to be employed by carers and varied qualitatively depending on the physical and cognitive abilities of the elderly, with healthy elderly addressed as one might address school-aged children and those with dementia addressed as infants. These results provide some initial insights into an issue that is extremely relevant to Singaporean society, given the city state's rapidly aging population.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Singapore
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A