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Title: Understanding high levels of singlehood in Singapore
Authors: Jones, G.W.
Yanxia, Z. 
Zhi, P.C.
Issue Date: Sep-2012
Citation: Jones, G.W.,Yanxia, Z.,Zhi, P.C. (2012-09). Understanding high levels of singlehood in Singapore. Journal of Comparative Family Studies 43 (5) : 731-750. ScholarBank@NUS Repository.
Abstract: The trend towards late marriage and nonmarriage has characterized East and Southeast Asia over the past three decades. Singlehood levels in Singapore are high, particularly among the Chinese population. Based on a recent qualitative study on 30 single Singaporeans of Chinese descent, the paper examines a number of factors relevant to the high level of singlehood among Chinese population in Singapore. The high financial and opportunity costs of marrying and raising a family are shown to be relevant, as well as increasing individualism and changing attitudes about marriage. The paper argues that the trend towards marriage postponement and non-marriage in Singapore is related to increasing emphasis on freedom, independence and self-actualization, greater individual decision making about marriage, the increasing social acceptability of premarital sex and cohabitation and changing attitudes about the desirability of marriage. Some findings from our Singapore case seem to echo the second demographic transition as reported in many Western societies. These findings may have implications for the Singapore government's population and social policy in terms of shaping positive attitudes towards marriage and procreation and building effective matchmaking institutions.
Source Title: Journal of Comparative Family Studies
ISSN: 00472328
Appears in Collections:Staff Publications

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