Introducing ‘resonance’: Revisioning the relationship between youth and later life in women born 1939–52

Penny Tinkler*, Laura Fenton, Resto Cruz

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

This article proposes ‘resonance’ as a fruitful way of conceptualising the relationship between youth and later life and reflecting on its significance: resonance is how a person’s ‘youth’ is lived with in the present of their later life. Resonance revisions youth, engaging with the complexity of its presence in the lifecourse. Relinquishing a preoccupation with continuity and linearity, youth seen from the vantage point of later life contributes fresh insights into what matters for people and how. This conceptualisation emerged from a qualitative study of women born 1939–52 which revealed that experiences attributed to the teens and early twenties have a presence in a person’s later life in ways unrecognised in established approaches, namely longitudinal life-course studies and socio-cultural approaches. These resonances are often historically inflected such that some cohorts may live with their youth in later life in ways that distinguish them from their predecessors and successors.
Original languageEnglish
JournalThe Sociological Review
Early online date22 Dec 2022
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 22 Dec 2022

Keywords / Materials (for Non-textual outputs)

  • baby boomers
  • later life
  • lifecourse
  • postwar Britain
  • resonance
  • women
  • youth


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