Parenting in Hong Kong : traditional Chinese cultural roots and contemporary phenomena

Tan Lei Shek, R.C.F. Sun

Research output: Chapter in book / Conference proceedingChapter in an edited book (as author)Academic researchpeer-review


In this chapter, traditional Hong Kong Chinese parenting characteristics are presented. These include focus on family harmony, well-defined parental and children roles, limited personal space for children, strict parental control, emphasis on continuity of family name, parental differences in socialization for boys and girls, and emphasis on filial piety. These attributes are revealed in traditional parenting literature such as family instruction books. With specific reference to contemporary parenting in Hong Kong, while traditional parenting characteristics persist (such as emphasis on academic excellence of children), there are gradual changes, such as the changing roles of fathers and mothers. There are parent-child discrepancies in perceived parenting attributes and parenting is less positive in vulnerable groups than in the non-vulnerable groups. There are also worrying trends in parenting and a severe lack of evidence-based parenting programs in Hong Kong.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationParenting across cultures : childrearing, motherhood and fatherhood in non-Western cultures
Number of pages14
ISBN (Electronic)9400775032, 9789400775039
ISBN (Print)9400775024, 9789400775022
Publication statusPublished - 2014


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