Structure of Child-Rearing Values in Urban China

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Developed primarily from studies undertaken in the market economy, child socialization theory suggests a central link between social class and child-rearing values. Middle-class parents value children's autonomy, whereas working-class parents endorse children's conformity. This research argues that the effects of class on child-rearing values differ in the market and the command economies. Drawing data from the World Values Survey, it examines the relationships among social class, education, occupational autonomy, and the valuation of children's autonomy and conformity in urban China. The findings suggest that while class and education influence child-rearing values of Chinese adults, the effect of class and the magnitude of education differ from what has been observed in market economies or capitalist societies. Furthermore, occupational autonomy is not the driving force of value variations. Sources and implications of the findings are discussed.


This article was originally published in Sociological Perspectives. The full-text article from the publisher can be found here.

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Sociological Perspectives


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