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Great-Grand Parents in Brazil? A Socio-Demographic Contextualization

Category: Journal Articles LARNA– Latin American Research Network on Ageing


Schuler, E. (2021) Great-Grand Parents in Brazil? A Socio-Demographic Contextualization. Journal of Population Ageing

Brazil is often viewed in a stereotyped manner, being considered a rather young country, evoking questions regarding the existence of great-grandparents in Brazilian society. The aim of this review article was to explore the socio-demographic context regarding great-grandparenthood in Brazil. An analysis of population ageing shows that, due to a reduction in mortality rates for all age groups, combined with a drop in fertility rates, the resulting increase in life expectancy in Brazil has created a demographic background which allows for an increasing proportion of older persons to become great-grandparents. This role is not necessarily linked to advanced chronological age, as there is still a large number of women who become mothers before the age of 20. When considering older great-grandparents, who are already in the stratum that is considered "elderly" in Brazil, there is a pronounced heterogeneity in terms of socioeconomic factors, health conditions, family background, and personal life stories. Findings from this review indicate that the socio-demographic, cultural and historical contexts not only enable the emergence of the role of great-grandparenthood in Brazil, but also influence this role, highlighting the urgent need for research on this topic.

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