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Intellectual Origins of Residential Normalcy Theory

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My award-winning paper designed to advance Environmental Gerontology theory proposed that older persons achieve residential normalcy when they are in their residential comfort and residential mastery zones. They then experience pleasurable, hassle-free, and memorable emotional experiences and feel both competent and in control of their everyday environments. However, when older persons fail to achieve residential normalcy, they initiate adaptive behaviors designed to manage or eliminate their discrepant individual and environmental circumstances. To understand both my motivations and abilities to construct this theory, I engage in an academic life review to identify those factors that most influenced my intellectual development. This exercise reveals that several critical and serendipitous interactions with universities, departments, organizations, faculty members, mentors, and colleagues motivated and channeled my research and writing on older people and their residential and care environments. It also emphasizes how throughout my career, a wealth of theoretical and empirical research by other academics both stimulated and reinforced my Environmental Gerontology focus.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: January 1, 2018

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