Half a century of radical economic projects have profoundly affected family ties in rural Chinese communities, to the detriment of a generation of senior citizens. Efforts to curtail centuries-old patriarchal networks coupled with massive industrialization schemes have led to an exodus of younger generations into cities. The elderly, often left behind to till modest plots in the countryside, now find themselves in dire conditions, struggling to survive. Perhaps the greatest irony is that the state’s modernization programs have added more than 30 million people to the welfare rolls who would have otherwise received support from their families.
Source: Washington Post