Noah Smith @Noahpinion17h
Almost none of the discussions I see about the decline of marriage bother to ask the question of *why people get married*...
@Noahpinion really? I thought it was widely accepted that female economic parity with men, and welfare, reduced marriage incentives.
@oddblots But @Noahpinion mentioned an example that runs counter that---Japan has lower marriage rates and definitely not parity.
@adamgurri @Noahpinion Japan is always a special case... Is there a good writeup of why that is, besides the "hikkomori" phenomenon?
@oddblots @Noahpinion No clue. That a similar phenomena is occurring, though, does make one question received wisdom on this subject.
@oddblots @Noahpinion My pet theory is that a lot of it can be explained by simply the transition away from agriculture.
@adamgurri @oddblots @Noahpinion Europe is post-agriculture, but non-marrieds still live together. Why the decline in -families-?
@Celt_Englishman @oddblots @Noahpinion They live together but don't get married or have kids. Not sure if comparable.
@adamgurri @oddblots @Noahpinion Even those having kids aren't getting married. EU has family formation without marriage; US neither. Why?
@Celt_Englishman @oddblots @Noahpinion Good question.
@Celt_Englishman @oddblots @Noahpinion gets at Noah's initial question---why do people get married at all?
@adamgurri @Celt_Englishman @oddblots Related question: Why don't people marry their best (platonic) friends?
@DrPhilofEconomi @adamgurri @Celt_Englishman @oddblots In other words, why do we bundle romance, cohabitation, and child-rearing?
.@Noahpinion @adamgurri @Celt_Englishman @oddblots Conformity. But the non-glib answer should be sought when institutions were still new.
@DrPhilofEconomi @adamgurri @Celt_Englishman @oddblots Saving marriage would seem to require a deep rethink of human relationships.
.@Noahpinion @adamgurri @Celt_Englishman @oddblots "Rethink" implies Cartesian rationality. idk if I'm ready to swallow that pill.
@DrPhilofEconomi @adamgurri @Celt_Englishman @oddblots I'm the Cartesian Demon himself, so it's a cinch for me.
@Noahpinion @DrPhilofEconomi @Celt_Englishman @oddblots burn the witch!