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The Transformative SelfPersonal Growth, Narrative Identity, and the Good Life$
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Jack Bauer

Print publication date: 2021

Print ISBN-13: 9780199970742

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: June 2021

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780199970742.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 24 January 2022

The Aging, Transformative Self

The Aging, Transformative Self

Growth Is Not Just for the Young

(p.381) 13 The Aging, Transformative Self
The Transformative Self

Jack Bauer

Oxford University Press

The transformative self is not just for the young. This chapter focuses on the aging self and how the person who has a transformative self interprets growth throughout the adult years. The chapter starts by debunking the popular belief—in both popular culture and academic psychology, despite the research evidence—that growth is just for the young. Research shows that older adults hold at least as many growth-oriented concerns as decline-oriented concerns, both in their memories and in their goals. However, growth is not a Pollyanna concept; eudaimonic growth is not easy. The chapter shows what young growth versus mature growth sounds like in personal narratives. Young and mature growth are examined in terms of concerns for self-identity, relational intimacy, and generative concern for future generations—and then in relation to well-being and wisdom.

Keywords:   age, aging self, young growth, growth memories, growth goals, mature growth, narrative identity, intimacy, generativity

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