DATE-ONOMICS by Jon Birger


How Dating Became a Lopsided Numbers Game
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A freelance journalist’s study of why young single women “struggle to find marriage-material men” while men “with less going for them seem to have little trouble with the opposite sex.”

A common complaint among educated, intelligent, and often beautiful women is that there are no men of equal status to date and wed. As Fortune contributor Birger sees it, declining marriage rates among young women of the middle class have to do with two trends: “lopsided gender ratios” and “a massive undersupply of college-educated men.” The author examines current data from colleges across the country and finds that the ratio of women to men is now approximately 4 to 3. The notable exceptions to this "rule" include universities like CalTech that have strong math and science programs. This in turn has led to the growth of the so-called campus hookup culture, in which women actively—but in many cases, unhappily—participate. In post-college life, Birger finds that these numbers have also led to another demographic trend: big cities like New York becoming home to more available middle-class women than men and to situations in which men treat the dating scene like a sexual smorgasbord. At the same time, however, he does observe, based on both anecdotal and statistical evidence, that in certain other cities like San Francisco, which is also near the technology mecca of Silicon Valley, women have better opportunities for both dating and marriage. Birger further notes that working-class men—who are finding themselves without class/education equals to date because more working-class women are seeking educations—may also be able to give accomplished women possibilities they cannot now find. The author does not intend to offer dating advice, but he does provide fascinating evidence to show how and why dating and mating culture in America has changed in the 21st century.

Informative and possibly useful to single readers.

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 2015
ISBN: 978-0-7611-8717-2
Page count: 224pp
Publisher: Workman
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 15th, 2015


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