27 NOV 2013 by ideonexus

 Literate Societies Place Less Value on the Elderly

...older people in traditional societies have a huge significance that would never occur to us in our modern, literate societies, where our sources of information are books and the Internet. In contrast, in traditional societies without writing, older people are the repositories of information. It's their knowledge that spells the difference between survival and death for their whole society in a time of crisis caused by rare events for which only the oldest people alive have had experience. ...
  1  notes

In societies without readily-available information stored in written words, the elderly are more valuable for their knowledge and experience.