Tuesday, October 7th, 2003, 8:00 PM

The Robert S. Liebert memorial Lecture

When Evening Falls:
The Immigrant's Encounter with Middle and Old Age

Salman Akhtar, M.D.

This lecture elucidates the immigrant’s encounter with the developmental tasks of middle and old age. It describes the vicissitudes of five psychosocial challenges characteristic of this phase of life and underscores the difficulties faced by the immigrant in each of these realms. These challenges include (i) letting go of the children, (ii) retirement, (iii) grandparenthood, (iv) loss of siblings and peers through death, and (v) declining physical health and anticipation of death. It is suggested that a pre-existing capacity for mourning alongside a satisfactory marriage, support from homoethnic community, non job-related sublimations, economic security, and absence of undue physical ailments help sustain a positive attitude as one faces these phase-specific dilemmas of late adult life.