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Marriage and Caste in America: Separate and Unequal Families in a Post-Marital Age

Tuesday November 2006


Kay S. Hymowitz William E. Simon Fellow, Manhattan Institute Contributing Editor, City Journal

America is facing a marriage crisis extending beyond the current debate over same-sex unions. The marriage revolution that began 40 years ago has turned us into a nation of separate and unequal families.

Kay S. Hymowitz examines the breakdown of marriage in the United States and how it threatens the nation’s future. Her book proposes that American marriage is designed to further “The Mission”—the shaping of children into self-reliant citizens and workers. Alarmingly, while the children of married parents tend eventually to become married parents themselves, the children of single parents often do not. The result: a vicious cycle engendering “two Americas”— one marriage-minded, one not; one economically successful, the other perpetually struggling. Nowhere is this problem more pressing than in the African-American community, where married parents have become increasingly rare.