Cover of Filial Piety by Edited by Charlotte Ikels
Filial Piety
Practice and Discourse in Contemporary East Asia
Edited by Charlotte Ikels

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2004
320 pages.
from $25.95

Cloth ISBN: 9780804747905
Paper ISBN: 9780804747912

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How have rapid industrial development and the aging of the population affected the expression of filial piety in East Asia? Eleven experienced fieldworkers take a fresh look at an old idea, analyzing contemporary behavior, not norms, among both rural and urban families in China, Japan, Korea, and Taiwan. Each chapter presents rich ethnographic data on how filial piety shapes the decisions and daily lives of adult children and their elderly parents. The authors’ ability to speak the local languages and their long-term, direct contact with the villagers and city dwellers they studied lend an immediacy and authenticity lacking in more abstract treatments of the topic.

This book is an ideal text for social science and humanities courses on East Asia because it focuses on shared cultural practices while analyzing the ways these practices vary with local circumstances of history, economics, social organization, and demography and with personal circumstances of income, gender, and family configuration.

About the author

Charlotte Ikels is Professor of Anthropology at Case Western Reserve University.

"This volume presents clear and riveting perspectives from the trenches of ethnographers on the front lines. Its substantive ethnographic data admirably fills a void in our understanding of social realities in contemporary East Asia by registering the pulse of filial practice in the global age."

Japan Studies Review

" . . . [T]his is a compelling volume."

The China Journal

"This valuable volume is a must for teaching and learning about this key topic affecting intergenerational relations whether in Asia or elsewhere."

Candian Journal of Sociology Online

"This valuable volume is a must for teaching and learning about this key topic affecting intergenerational relations whether in Asia or elsewhere."

Canadian Sociology Journal Online