Persistence and Change in the Comparative Status of Mothers-in-Law and Daughters-in-Law in Taiwanese Families: 1979 to 2016. By: Kung, Hsiang-Ming; Yi, Chin Chun; Farrell, Michael. Journal of Family Issues. Oct2019, Vol. 40 Issue 14, p1937-1962. 26p.

Traditionally in Taiwan, daughters-in-law lived with their husbands’ parents and, following principles of filial piety, were subordinate to their mothers-in-law. The author proposes that, as daughters-in-law acquire resources such as education and income, their status within their families will increase relative to their mothers-in-law. This hypothesis frames an exploratory study comparing rural agrarian families gathered by Gallin in 1958 and 1979 with urban industrial family data gathered by the author in 1997 and in postindustrial families in 2016. The current study finds that, despite having more education and income, urban daughters-in-law in 1997 maintained deferential relations with their mothers-in-law; and even in postindustrial 2016, there is resistance to an egalitarian relationship between daughters-in-law and mothers-in-law. Deference by daughters-in-law is reinforced by the attitudes of their husbands as well their own natal mothers.