Six: Families and caring in South Asian communities

This chapter reports the findings of the NDA project ‘Families and Caring in South Asian Communities’, which focused on understanding the experiences and perceptions of old age and later life among Bangladeshi and Pakistani elders. Particular emphasis was placed on investigating social identities and levels of participation in transnational, national and local communities; perceptions and experiences of family lives, social networks, ‘place’ and locality; and ideas, meanings and experiences of ‘care’ and ‘support’. The chapter discusses the key methodological challenges, summarises the main substantive themes and considers how different these are (or are not) from the general population in order to begin to distil the unique or novel dimensions of the experience of ageing among those populations. The chapter raises critical questions about the extent to which policy and practice recognise the diversity of experience with regard to notions of ageing.

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