Psychology and aging in the land of the panda

Helene H. Fung and Sheung-Tak Cheng

in Oxford Handbook of Chinese Psychology

Published in print February 2010 | ISBN: 9780199541850
Published online September 2012 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Library of Psychology

Psychology and aging in the land of the panda

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  • Psychology
  • Social Psychology
  • Clinical Psychology



Psychology and aging is a relatively large field of academic study. It describes and examines developmental changes in the second half of life in areas ranging from physiology, cognition, and emotion to personality and social relationships. This article presents a discussion on how aging in Chinese societies may be different from that in the West, viz. North American and Western European societies. It also reviews the literature on psychology and aging in Chinese societies, mostly Hong Kong, but also Macau, Taiwan, and mainland China. It provides empirical findings on age differences in self and other perceptions, interpersonal relationships, and cognition, as well as culture-specific constructs such as filial piety and renqing (relationship orientation). Besides providing background information on population aging in Asia, and China in particular, it also highlights the specific opportunities and challenges that population aging presents to Chinese societies, relative to their Western counterparts.

Keywords: aging; age differences; filial piety; population aging; Chinese societies

Article.  13015 words. 

Subjects: Psychology ; Social Psychology ; Clinical Psychology

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