MPI-MMG in Dialogue "Aspiring in Later Life: Reframing Ageing in Diversity Research"

Events 2023

  • Datum: 11.10.2023
  • Uhrzeit: 16:00 - 17:30
  • Ort: MPI-MMG, Goettingen
  • Raum: Hybrid event: Livestream/ Live, Hermann Föge Weg 11
MPI-MMG in Dialogue "Aspiring in Later Life: Reframing Ageing in Diversity Research"

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Chair: Victoria K. Sakti (MPI-MMG)

Megha Amrith (MPI-MMG)
Iza Kavedžija (University of Cambridge)
Daniel Miller
(University College London)

Dora Sampaio (MPI-MMG Alumna, Utrecht University)


In our highly interconnected and globalized world, people often pursue their aspirations across multiple places. Yet in public and scholarly debates, particularly within migration and diversity research, aspirations are often taken-for-granted as the realm of younger, mobile generations as those who hold the greatest potential for shaping the future. We question popular assumptions that aspirations are exclusively located and achieved in earlier life phases and that older age is a passive stage of life for receiving care, staying put, and accepting things as they are. The panelists will discuss their research on ageing in contexts of transnational migration, in urban spaces, and in times of digitalization. The event takes the recently-published volume Aspiring in Later Life: Movements Across Time, Space,and Generations by the ‘Ageing in a Time of Mobility’ research group at MPI-MMG as a starting point for reframing the discussion on ageing in diverse global contexts in more nuanced ways.

Bios Panelists:

Megha Amrith leads the Max Planck Research Group “Ageing in a Time of Mobility” at the Max Planck Institute for the Study of Religious and Ethnic Diversity. Her research focuses on migrant labor, care, ageing, inequalities, belonging and citizenship in Southeast Asia. She is author of the monograph Caring for Strangers: Filipino Medical Workers in Asia (NIAS Press, 2017) and co-editor of the volume (with V. Sakti and D. Sampaio) of Aspiring in Later Life: Movements Across Time, Space, and Generations (Rutgers University Press, 2023). She is Co-Editor-in-Chief of the journal Global Networks.

Iza Kavedžija is an Assistant Professor of Medical Anthropology at the University of Cambridge. She specializes in the anthropology of Japan, and has written on topics including meaning in later life, wellbeing and creativity. Recent book publications include Meaning in Life: Tales from Aging Japan (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2019); Values of Happiness: Toward an Anthropology of Purpose in Life (University of Chicago Press, 2016); and The Process of Wellbeing: Conviviality, Care, Creativity (Cambridge University Press, 2021).

Daniel Miller is Professor of Anthropology at University College London. He has written and edited 44 books, including Material Culture and Mass Consumption (1987), A Theory of Shopping (1998), The Comfort of Things (2008), Stuff (2010) Digital Anthropology (Ed. with Heather Horst 2012), How the World Changed Social Media (2016 with 8 others) The Comfort of People (2017), The Global Smartphone (2021 with 10 others) and Ageing with Smartphones in Ireland (with Pauline Garvey 2021). Also, a special issue of Anthropology and Aging focusing on the comparative dimensions of our work on ageing. He was the director of the Why We Post Project (2012-2017) and the ASSA project - Smartphones and Smart Ageing (2017-2022). He tweets at @DannyAnth.

Dora Sampaio is Assistant Professor in the Department of Human Geography and Spatial Planning, Utrecht University, Netherlands. She is an affiliated researcher with the Max Planck Research Group ‘Ageing in a Time of Mobility’. Her research interests focus on migration, transnational families, care, intergenerational inequalities, and the life course. She is the author of Migration, Diversity and Inequality in Later Life: Ageing at a Crossroads and co-editor of two recent journal special issues on ageing and migration.

Bio Chair:

Victoria Sakti is a postdoctoral research fellow at the Max Planck Research Group ‘Ageing in a Time of Mobility’ in Göttingen, Germany. Her research focuses on ageing and displacement in the Global South, care, border practices, legacies of violence, social repair, collective memory, identity, and belonging. She has conducted her primary fieldwork in Timor-Leste and Indonesia and, more recently, among Southeast Asian diasporas in Europe. She is the co-editor (with M. Amrith and D. Sampaio) of the volume Aspiring in Later Life: Movements Across Time, Space, and Generations (Rutgers University Press, 2023) and a special issue on the extended temporalities of forced migration for the Journal of Intercultural Studies.

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