Beliefs about causes of poverty and psychological well-being of parents and adolescents experiencing economic disadvantage in Hong Kong

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14 Citations (Scopus)


Parents and their adolescent children from 199 poor families in Hong Kong responded to the Chinese Perceived Causes of Poverty Scale (that assesses beliefs about causes of poverty in terms of personal problems, exploitation, lack of opportunities, fate, and external causes) and measures of psychological well-being over two consecutive years. Results showed that measures of beliefs about causes of poverty (particularly beliefs in terms of fate and external factors over which one has little control) were concurrently and longitudinally related to psychological well-being. Prospective analyses further showed that the relations between these two domains were bi-directional in nature. Parent-adolescent differences (parents vs. adolescents) and parental differences (fathers vs. mothers) in the linkages between beliefs about causes of poverty and psychological well-being were found. The present findings suggest that family therapists and allied helping professionals should be sensitive to the role played by beliefs about causes of poverty held by family members when they work with families experiencing economic disadvantage.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)239-254
Number of pages16
JournalAmerican Journal of Family Therapy
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2004
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Clinical Psychology

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