House United, House Divided: The Chinese Family in Taiwan

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Through a study of the Chinese joint family in Yen-liao, a farming village in southwestern Taiwan, House United, House Dividedgives a new view of the forces that keep Chinese families together or encourage them to divide. While all major forms of the traditional Chinese family are well represented in the village, the settlement is notable for its many large or joint families whose members in fact constitute the majority of the village's population. Based on the author's firsthand observations of the Chinese joint family, the book presents a wealth of new infomation on joint family economic and social organization. Emphasizing the process with which simpler families develop into joint forms and subsequently become divided, Dr. Cohen discusses the importance of the family estate and the changing social and economic positions of key family members under the impact of major domestic events. This fascinating study gives the first comprehensive treatment of the economic role of women in the traditional Chinese family.In addition the extraordinary conjunction between modernization and tradition in present-day Taiwan makes it possible to learn a geat deal about the dynamics of change in traditional chinese society.