It is noted, although deliberately not going into any great detail, that one of the international social phenomena of this time has been the expansion, during the last twenty-five years of the 'education for older adults movement'. Concepts and theories are the best tools the authors have for understanding social phenomena. Concepts and theories, rather than anecdotal evidence should provide the framework for the search for the legitimation of educational gerontology as a field of study. One of the consequences of applying critical theory to educational gerontology is that it leads people to recognise the need for a paradigm shift. A paradigm is a tool of analysis, making sense of complex phenomena. During the late 1960s and 1970s, there was a growing interest in the actual context of old age. In the everyday management of the economy and the administration and development of social institutions the position of the elderly is subtly shaped and changed.