Title

Gendered “Long Arm” of Parental Education? Life Course Influences on Later Life Functional Limitations in India

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

11-23-2018

Publication Title

Journal of Aging and Health

First page number:

1

Last page number:

27

Abstract

Objective: We adopt a novel approach to mediation analysis to account for interrelated life course social processes that constitute later life health disparities. We examine gender-specific direct effect of parental education on functional limitations in later life. Method: Based on the first wave (2007-2010; n = 7,150) of the Study on Global Ageing and Adult Health (SAGE), we estimate both (natural) direct and indirect effects of parental education on functional limitations in later life. Results: We observed a significant indirect and positive effect of parental education on functional health. Contrary to prior literature, we documented adverse direct effect of parental education on later life functional health. The direct effect is statistically significant only for father’s education, and is greater, though not statistically significantly so, for women than men. Discussion: The intersection of gender status and interrelated social stratification documented by this study highlights the need for gender-sensitive life course research. Such research can enhance our understanding of the ways patriarchal social systems produce heterogeneous effects of interrelated structural factors on later life health for men and women.

Keywords

Critical period; Pathway model; Early childhood; Life course; Gender; Causal inference; Mediation; Later life health

Disciplines

Sociology

Language

English

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