Generational shift in parental beliefs and parenting practice
Refereed conference paper presented and published in conference proceedings


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AbstractThis study examines the lifespan of parenthood. Presently, parenthood has been characterized as fraught with problems – anxieties about children and worries about adverse consequence of parenting on children. Rhetoric abounds such as irresponsible parenting, overprotective parenting, anxious parents, and “monster parents” are terms used that sounding alarms over contemporary parenthood. However, there is little study attempts to understand how contemporary parenting has become characterized as such. In retrospect, there have been generational shifts in “themes” of parenthood in the history of Hong Kong. This study seeks to unravel these generational shifts in parental beliefs and parenting practices, and investigates how the interplay between history, culture and contexts provided the ground for these generational shifts to emerge.
The presentation draws on findings from a qualitative study to examine the generational shifts in parenting beliefs and practices in the Hong Kong Chinese context. The research process starts with an archival study of discourses on parenting over the last decades, then with 120 in-depth interviews with 60 parents, each interview individually for twice. The participants spanned across five generational cohorts – parenthood in the 1970’s or before, the 80’s, the 90’s, the 2000’s and the 2010’s, with 6 mothers and 6 fathers in each cohort, coming up to a total of 30 mothers and 30 fathers. Narrative accounts of parents reveal generational shifts and gender disparity in parental responsibility and identity as a parent. The findings provide indigenous understanding to generational shifts in parental beliefs and practices; and look into the discursive formations of dominant discourses that shape parenting beliefs and conditions constrain parenting practices. Based on the findings, the presentation discusses implications for parenting wok and proposes directions for child and parenting services.
All Author(s) ListLam C. M.
Name of ConferenceJoint World Conference on Social Work, Education and Social Development 2018
Start Date of Conference04/07/2018
End Date of Conference07/07/2018
Place of ConferenceDublin
Country/Region of ConferenceIreland
Year2018
Month7
LanguagesEnglish-United Kingdom
KeywordsParental beliefs, parenting practices, parental responsibilities, parental identity

Last updated on 2018-03-12 at 17:02