"They ought to do this for their parents": perceptions of filial obligations among immigrant and Dutch older people

H.A.G. de Valk, D. Schans

Research output: Contribution to journal/periodicalArticleScientificpeer-review

Abstract

This paper presents a study of the perceptions of filial obligations among immigrant and Dutch older people in The Netherlands. It is first questioned how and to what extent these perceptions are determined by ethnic background or attributable to socio-demographic factors. Secondly, we study how filial obligations among immigrant older people differ by level of acculturation. Data from the main and migrant sample of the Netherlands Kinship Panel Study (2002–2003) for respondents aged 50–80 years in five ethnic groups are used. The analysis sample included 470 Dutch, 70 Turks, 73 Moroccans, 125 Surinamese and 59 Antilleans. Immigrant background was found to be an important determinant of the perception of a child’s obligations towards parents. Immigrant elders generally expected more weekly visits and care from their children, and more facilitation of co-residence to parents than was the case for the Dutch. Among elderly people in all ethnic groups, including the Dutch, the attained level of education wasrelated to perceptions of filial obligation, but marital status and current health status were not. Finally, it was found that different aspects of acculturation were related to the perception of filial obligations among older people with Mediterranean and Caribbean backgrounds. KEY WORDS – immigrant elderly, filial obligations, acculturation, perceptions, The Netherlands.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)49-66
JournalAgeing & Society
Volume28
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2008

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