In the coming years old age will be more and more a central theme, because in the economically developed Western countries longevity is on the rise. As indicated by some international observers (ex. World Health Organization), along with longevity, however, abuses and maltreatment on older people are increasing. In Western society characterized by the myths of autonomy, individualism, youth and efficiency, old age does not seem to find social space and dignity. In this context, we propose to read the works of those thinkers who have considered the concept of old age within a social dimension of relationship in past ages. One of these authors was Marcus Tullius Cicero who in the treatise Cato maior de senectute, commonly known as De senectute, tried to restore social dignity to the old age.
Keywords: Old age, dignity, respect, relationships, elder abuse, individualism, presentism, echnocratic society, Cicero’s thought.