Gender and material transfers between older parents and children in Ismailia, Egypt

Kathryn M. Yount, Solveig A. Cunningham, Michal Engelman, Emily M. Agree

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


In Egypt, kin relations have been governed by a patriarchal contract, which defines expectations for intergenerational support along gendered lines. Social changes may be disrupting these customs and bringing attention to the ways gender may influence intergenerational support in rapidly changing contexts. Using data from 4,465 parent-child dyads in Ismailia, Egypt, we examined whether intergenerational material transfers favored women over men and whether gaps in needs and endowments accounted for gender differences in transfers. Fathers gave children money and goods more often than did mothers; mothers received material transfers from children more often than did fathers. Compared to sons, daughters made transfers to parents less often and received transfers from parents more often. We found residual advantages to mothers and daughters, even adjusting for differential needs and endowments. Findings corroborate persistent norms of gender complementarity, patrilocal endogamy, and reciprocation for women's caregiving, despite changes that have threatened patriarchal rules of exchange.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)116-131
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Marriage and Family
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 2012


  • Aging
  • Classic Patriarchy
  • Egypt
  • Gender
  • Intergenerational Transfers

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Anthropology
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)


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