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Terese A

Terese Anving

Director of Studies | Associate senior lecturer

Terese A

Intergenerational Care in Corona times. : A Study of Relationships, Commitments, and Practices of Care in Swedish Families during a Pandemic

Author

  • Terese Anving
  • Sara Eldén
  • Linn Alenius Wallin

Summary, in English

The corona pandemic has put intergenerational relationships in focus in ways previously never experiences. In many national contexts, lockdowns and restrictions have caused forced generational separation in families. In Sweden, the official government standpoint of generational separation – all citizens over 70 were to avoid contact with others, and especially to stay away from interactions with grandchildren – has severely affected practices of care and emotional support between generations. This has brought attention to the persistent significance of care between generations in Sweden, contrasting sociological theories depicting the country as the ’most individualized’ society in the world where the expansive welfare state is seen to have led to ‘defamiliarisation’ and weakening intergenerational ties (Bauman 2003; Berggren Trägårdh 2006). Previous research, including our on-going study Intergenerational care in Sweden (SRC Eldén 2018-01053), show that involvement by grandparents in everyday care of adult children’s families has increased in recent decades, as has engagement of adult children in everyday care of grandparents. During corona, these engagements are challenged, and the consequences thereof are multifaceted (Kivi et al 2020; Iversen et al 2020).

This paper analyses the effects of the corona situation on intergenerational care relations, focusing how care is done, understood and negotiated (Morgan, 2011; Mason, 1996) between elderly parents and their adult children and grandchildren. Of special interest is the effects of forced separation on relationships regarding practical care arrangements, emotional support and commitments. Our point of departure is a study where data (biographical interviews, diary interviews, lifelines, drawing exercises with grandchildren) from grandparents, adult children and grandchildren has been gathered. So far, 45 individuals have been interviewed, several in repeated encounters, before and during the pandemic.

Department/s

  • Department of Gender Studies
  • Department of Sociology
  • Sociology

Publishing year

2021-09-01

Language

English

Document type

Conference paper: abstract

Topic

  • Social Work

Conference name

ESA 15th Conference of the European Sociological Association: Sociological Knowledges for Alternative Futures

Conference date

2021-08-31 - 2021-09-03

Conference place

Barcelona, Spain

Status

Published

Project

  • Omsorgsgörande mellan generationer. En studie av relationer, engagemang och omsorg i vardagens familjeliv.