Epilogue

Future Perspectives
  • Jacob Lomranz
Part of the The Springer Series in Adult Development and Aging book series (SSAD)

Abstract

The area of mental health is obviously interwoven in, and to a certain extent dependent on, the larger field of gerontology. At the end of the twentieth century, we have to ask: Where is the field of gerontology and the area of mental health in aging at this point, and where are they going? While our achievements have, to a great extent, laid the foundations for future developments in the field in the next century, it may be rather difficult to answer this question, especially in light of theorizing. The implications of the history and multidimensionality of the field precludes us at this time from inferring its exact future course. Achenbaum (1995), asking how far gerontology has become a science, concludes: “Thus by the end of the twentieth century, gerontology has emerged as a field, not a scientific specialty. Indeed, some researchers on aging have begun to subvert the assumption that gerontology should be classified primarily as a’ science’” (p. 253). The field may deepen its specialties and subfields, may become more coherent and integrated, or, to the contrary, it may be come dissolved as the different areas are incorporated in the various specialties and related scientific domains. A prominent founder of gerontology, Neugarten (1994), has predicted “the end of gerontology,” since age in itself cannot be maintained as a criterion for theory or research. In fact, a model by which an expert on human cells also functions as a “gerontologist,” or a physician or clinical psychologist is able to treat adolescent clients as well as elderly ones, may be rationally defended.

Keywords

Mental Health American Psychological Association Mental Health Clinician Theory Building Clinical Gerontology 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1998

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jacob Lomranz
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Psychology and the Herczeg Institute on AgingTel Aviv UniversityTel AvivIsrael

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