Intergenerational family relations in old age during regular times and in Covid-19 period

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


During the last few decades, we encounter a demographic revolution with increased life expectancy and a growing number of people 80+. These developments bring together several generations in families who interact in various life domains. Intergenerational family relations represent complex family interactions of solidarity. The most known model is the Bengtson one which includes six dimensions: structural solidarity-living arrangements; solidarity of contact between generations; emotional solidarity-mainly emotional support; functional solidarity-division of household chores; affectual solidarity-involvement in intimate relations with family members; normative solidarity-value transmission to younger generations. Recently another dimension-digital solidarity was added. Other researchers (Lüscher and Pillemer, Intergenerational ambivalence: A new approach to the study, 1998) added Conflict and Ambivalence. In a study comparing several countries, Israel was high in some of the dimensions: emotional, structural, contact, and functional. These data reflect the importance and strong family relations in Israeli society. All this occurs in "regular-normal" times before Covid-19. However, since the World Health Organization (WHO) instructed social distancing, in order to reduce face-to-face contacts and by doing so, to reduce pandemic influence, the pandemic caused isolation for all, but impacting mostly the older population who could not meet with family and friends and being closed in their homes. To understand this special period and its impact on intergenerational relations from elders' perspective, we interviewed 20 community-dwelling older people about their feelings, patterns of behaviour, changes, and differences they experience in their relations, in order to "validate" the Bengtson model.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationHandbook on COVID-19 Pandemic and Older Persons
Subtitle of host publicationNarratives and Issues from India and Beyond
Number of pages11
ISBN (Electronic)9789819914678
ISBN (Print)9789819914661
StatePublished - 22 Jun 2023

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© The Author(s), under exclusive license to Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2023. All rights reserved.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Psychology
  • General Social Sciences


Dive into the research topics of 'Intergenerational family relations in old age during regular times and in Covid-19 period'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this