Singaporean women living in China: the uneven burdens of middle-class transnational caregiving

Sylvia Ang, Leng Leng Thang, Elaine Lynn Ee Ho

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Studies on care circulation have highlighted that the landscape of caregiving within transnational families is uneven and shaped by institutional contexts. The importance of marital status, however, remains underexplored. Drawing on interviews with middle-class, older single female migrants from Singapore who are living in China or commuting between Singapore and China, this article considers how older single female migrants’ care and ageing orientations are shaped by the gendered norms and heteronormativity underpinning migration and care regimes. We argue first that gendered norms and heteronormativity underlying migration regimes result in fewer strategies for older single female migrants to prolong migration; second, that such gendered norms and heteronormativity shape their long-distance caregiving practices, even as they live abroad; and third, that by aligning later-life aspirations with their eldercare obligations, they reinforce gendered and heteronormative expectations of caregiving. Through focusing on migration and care regimes, this article contributes to transnational scholarship on familyhood, care circulations, and ageing futures.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)464-480
Number of pages17
JournalAsian Studies Review
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2023


  • ageing migrants
  • care circulation
  • China
  • gender
  • heteronormativity
  • Singapore
  • single migrants
  • transnational families

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