Ageing and Society



Values, change and inter-generational ties between two generations of women in Singapore


PEGGY TEO a1c1, ELSPETH GRAHAM a2, BRENDA S. A. YEOH a1 and SUSAN LEVY a2
a1 Department of Geography, National University of Singapore.
a2 Department of Geography, University of St Andrews, Scotland.

Article author query
teo p   [PubMed][Google Scholar] 
graham e   [PubMed][Google Scholar] 
yeoh b   [PubMed][Google Scholar] 
levy s   [PubMed][Google Scholar] 

Abstract

Personal values are framed by social contexts and carried through a person's lifecourse, but are sufficiently malleable to adapt to changing conditions. The dynamic character of personal values should be more frequently recognised in studies of inter-generational ties. This study examines the relationships between two generations of Singaporean women and their divergent values about gender roles, preference for the gender of children, family formation, care-giving and living arrangements. Younger women embrace more western views, while their older counterparts uphold Confucian values. Previous studies have tended to characterise inter-generational ties as conveying ‘conflict’ or ‘solidarity’, but here the concept of ‘ambivalence’ is employed to show that contradictory values co-exist, and that inter-generational ties encapsulate the negotiated outcome of complex attitudes, values and aspirations.

(Accepted January 22 2003)


Key Words: inter-generational ties; ambivalence; change; lifecourse; gender roles; family; Singapore.

Correspondence:
c1 Peggy Teo, Department of Geography, National University of Singapore, 1 Arts Link, Kent Ridge, Singapore 117570. e-mail: geoteop@nus.edu.sg