"Well, All Those Constraints are Gone." A Qualitative Study of Time Sovereignty in Old Age

Anne Münch


With the transition into retirement older adults face the task of rearranging both their daily routines and the additional free time that was previously spent in employment. These individual adjustment processes vary, resulting in more or less satisfactory outcomes. In this article I present results of a qualitative study which explored the question of how older adults spend their time. In doing so, I reconstruct the subjective meanings of time sovereignty in retirement. Based on grounded theory methodology, a total of three strategies to deal with time sovereignty in old age emerge from the interview material. These strategies are related to different time experiences and time competencies, and they also point to the importance of the employment biography even after the retirement transition. Depending on and being influenced by the particular contextual conditions, retired older adults tend to enjoy their time, fill their time or invest their time.

URN: http://nbn-resolving.de/urn:nbn:de:0114-fqs1403193


old age; grounded theory methodology; everyday lifestyles; retirement; secondary analysis; time sovereignty

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.17169/fqs-15.3.2167

Copyright (c) 2014 Anne Münch

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