The short lifetime of digital technologies means that generational identities are difficult to establish around any particular technologies let alone around more far-reaching socio-technological ‘revolutions’. Examining the consumption and use of digital technologies throughout the stages of human development, this book provides a valuable overview of ICT usage and generational differences. It focuses on the fields of home, family and consumption as key arenas where these processes are being enacted, sometimes strengthening old distinctions, sometimes creating new ones, always embodying an inherent restlessness that affects all aspects and all stages of life.

Combining a collection of international perspectives from a range of fields, including social gerontology, social policy, sociology, anthropology and gender studies, Digital Technologies and Generational Identity weaves empirical evidence with theoretical insights on the role of digital technologies across the life course. It takes a unique post-Mannheimian standpoint, arguing that each life stage can be defined by attitudes towards, and experiences of, digital technologies as these act as markers of generational differences and identity.

It will be of particular value to academics of social policy and sociology with interests in the life course and human development as well as those studying media and communication, youth and childhood studies, and gerontology.

part I|43 pages

Historical, theoretical and methodological perspectives

part II|94 pages

Family generations and ICT

chapter 5|14 pages

Mobile life of middle-aged employees

Fragmented time and softer schedules

chapter 6|18 pages

Intergenerational solidarity and ICT usage

Empirical insights from Finnish and Slovenian families

chapter 7|15 pages

Gendering the mobile phone

A life course approach

part III|75 pages

Consumption, lifestyles and markets

chapter 11|18 pages

Necessities to all?

The role of ICTs in the everyday life of the middle-aged and elderly between 1999 and 2014

chapter 12|16 pages

A risk to privacy or a need for security?

Digital domestic technologies in the lives of young adults and late middle-agers

chapter 13|18 pages

Personality traits and computer use in midlife

Leisure activities and work characteristics as mediators

chapter 15|5 pages