Academic journal article Family Relations

Aging and Generational Relations: Life-Course and Cross-Cultural Perspectives

Academic journal article Family Relations

Aging and Generational Relations: Life-Course and Cross-Cultural Perspectives

Article excerpt

Hareven, Tamara K. (Ed.) (1996). Aging and Generational Relations: Life-Course and Cross-Cultural Perspectives. Hawthorne, NY: Aldine de Gruyter 328 pp. Paper ISBN 0202-3050-0, price $29.95.

This edited book resulted from the International Conference on Aging and Generational Relations Over the Life Course (October, 1991) and is the paperback edition of the contemporary chapters from a larger volume, Aging and Generational Relations Over the Life Course: A Historical and Cross-Cultural Perspective.

The focus of this edition is on generational relations, specifically generational assistance. The authors use a life course perspective to guide each of the 12 chapters. A comparative cross cultural perspective is provided on generational relations with chapters being organized around the United States, Europe, and East Asia. The book provides a context for the qualitative differences of providing care in different cultures based on cultural norms, co-residency patterns, type of assistance, impact of societal change, and parent-child relationships throughout the life course. The reader becomes aware that generational assistance in some form is universal, but generational assistance behavior is dependent upon cultural and familial factors.

The strength of this book is the attention to context through the use of the life course approach (e.g., developmental and historical context) and cross cultural comparisons (e.g., cultural context). The life course approach examines the complexity of generations with regard to individual and familial transitions, such as timing and synchronization. Cultural comparisons allow for sensitivity of the interpretation of findings concerning generational assistance. …

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