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ERIC Number: EJ877752
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2007
Pages: 5
Abstractor: ERIC
ISSN: ISSN-0013-1849
The Impact of Life Stages on Parent-Child Relationships: A Comparative Look at Japanese & American University Students
Takei, Yoshimitsu; Honda, Tokio; Shieh, Sheau-Hue
Educational Perspectives, v40 n1 p52-56 2007
Adolescence is often considered a period in a person's life when important physiological and emotional changes occur. When discussing adolescence, however, it should not be forgotten that it is just another stage in one's life span between birth and death. By adopting a life-span perspective, researchers are more likely to consider contextual factors which affect adolescents and less likely to ignore the possibility of the individual going through many changes in his or her life span. This paper uses data obtained from undergraduate university students in the United States and Japan to address questions related to adolescence. The authors explore the extent to which relationships between adolescents and parents reveal cross-cultural similarities or differences. They also explore how changes in child-parent relationships, and the reasons which purportedly account for those changes, reveal cross-cultural similarities or differences. While many would assume that major differences in family relationships naturally exist between two societies that are as culturally different as the United States and Japan, there is a theoretical reason to anticipate the opposite. Goode (1970) proposed that families in industrialized societies show structural and normative changes which tend to converge. If this is true, then patterns of parent-child relationships in the two societies should reveal considerable similarities. The authors provide a brief overview of this topic and then present an analysis of data collected from a sample of Japanese and American undergraduates. They identify similarities and differences in the parent-child relationships, as well as the changes that occurred over time. Their analysis offers some grounds for suggesting that industrialization, as Goode argues, could create similar patterns of change in relationships within the family in culturally dissimilar societies. (Contains 6 tables and a bibliography.)
College of Education, University of Hawaii at Manoa. Wist Annex 2 Room 131, 1776 University Avenue, Honolulu, HI 96822. Tel: 808-956-8002; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Japan; United States