Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://scholarbank.nus.edu.sg/handle/10635/143838
Title: SHARING IS CARING: UNDERSTANDING THE FAMILY’S ROLE IN ELDERCARE IN SINGAPORE
Authors: ALOYSIUS TAN YOKE JUN
Keywords: everyday politics of care, governmentality, filial piety, family, body, Singapore
Issue Date: 2017
Citation: ALOYSIUS TAN YOKE JUN (2017). SHARING IS CARING: UNDERSTANDING THE FAMILY’S ROLE IN ELDERCARE IN SINGAPORE. ScholarBank@NUS Repository.
Abstract: In light of Singapore’s ageing population, the state promotes eldercare as the family’s responsibility. However, the family’s everyday caregiving experiences are overlooked in the geographies of care. This thesis thus redresses this gap by focusing on the family caregiver body, to uncover the power politics behind everyday (elder)care geographies in Singapore. This thesis first discursively analyses the biopolitical practices employed by the state in framing the family’s role in eldercare. It introduces a geographical perspective by using the caregiving body as scalar and spatial focus. By using Foucauldian biopolitics and governmentality, I identify that the state’s biopolitical goal is to attain a healthy elderly population and lower healthcare costs. I then argue that the state bases its eldercare policies on the moral concept of filial piety, inscribing messages and expectations of care on the family caregivers’ bodies. It positions the family as the first line of care, with community care as an alternative. It also utilizes state education and media to promote discourses of filial piety and familial responsibility. Caregivers, are, however, not passive subjects under the state-led biopolitical project. Employing semi-structured interviews, I unpack 20 family caregivers’ perspectives and negotiations of the state’s family-oriented discourses. I adopt de Certeau’s theorisation of the ‘everyday life’ to uncover the body’s everyday encounters and tactics in the home space. I argue that the caregivers either embody or negotiate these discourses creatively in other forms through their everyday experiences. Using this thesis as a starting point, I ultimately hope that these embodied voices and experiences can be incorporated more sensitively in the future formulation of Singapore’s healthcare policies.
URI: http://scholarbank.nus.edu.sg/handle/10635/143838
Appears in Collections:Bachelor's Theses (Restricted)

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