chapter  9
22 Pages

Social Change and Well-being: The Place of Religion in Older Bulgarian Men’s Lives

This is the first of two chapters examining different perspectives on men and women’s ageing and its relationship to religious belief and practice. The present chapter examines in depth the well-being of the older men interviewed in Bulgaria, in relation to the social changes they have experienced over their lives, particularly changes in regard to religion. We begin by reviewing previous studies on the effects of social change on the experience of ageing before presenting our analysis of the older men in our sample in Bulgaria. We purposefully evaluate the wellbeing and its sources in men both with and without strong religious faith. In the concluding sections we comment on the apparent stability of these men’s attitudes to religion with age and draw some comparisons with the older men studied in Romania and the UK.