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Health Status and Social and Demographic Determinants of Living Arrangements among the Korean Elderly

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Authors
Eu, Hong Sook
Issue Date
1992-12
Publisher
Population and Development Studies Center, Seoul National University
Citation
Korea Journal of Population and Development, Vol.21 No.2, pp. 197-223
Abstract
This study explores a critical issue related to aging -living arrangements of the elderly and the factors that influence these arrangements. The study uses the 1984 Korean Elderly Survey and findings from previous studies on living arrangements, and draws on cultural factors and particular situations in Korea. Hypotheses are tested using logit analyses. Results indicate that living arrangements of the Korean elderly reflect gender-role differences in caregiving and performance of household activities, primary caregiving or support relations in old age, and family life cycle stage. Being married is far more advantageous for men than women at old ages, since the wife continues to take care of the husband and household work. Severe disability of the wife seriously limits the couples' ability for independent living, while disability of the husband imposes a less imminent need for coresidence as long as the wife can take care of him and there are no other serious difficulties facing the couple. Elderly persons' economic resources are the greatest determinant of their living arrangements, due in part to poor public assistance programs, the high cost of housing, typical extravagant spending on children's weddings and education, and early retirement. The second strongest determinant is availability of a son. The absence of a son greatly increase the likelihood of living without children even among the elderly who have daughters, which indicates the persistence of the patriarchal family system ill Korea. Availability of unmarried children is closely related to living with these children only, in order to avoid household crowding and due to these children's dependency on parents.
Language
English
URI
http://hdl.handle.net/10371/85210
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College of Social Sciences (사회과학대학)Institute for Social Development and Policy Research (사회발전연구소)Development and SocietyKorea Journal of Population and Development Vol.21 No.1/2 (1992)
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