Is Marriage for White People?: How the African American Marriage Decline Affects Everyone (Google eBook)

Front Cover
Penguin, Sep 1, 2011 - Social Science - 304 pages
22 Reviews
A distinguished Stanford law professor examines the steep decline in marriage rates among the African American middle class, and offers a paradoxical-nearly incendiary-solution.

Black women are three times as likely as white women to never marry.
That sobering statistic reflects a broader reality: African Americans are the most unmarried people in our nation, and contrary to public perception the racial gap in marriage is not confined to women or the poor. Black men, particularly the most successful and affluent, are less likely to marry than their white counterparts. College educated black women are twice as likely as their white peers never to marry.

Is Marriage for White People? is the first book to illuminate the many facets of the African American marriage decline and its implications for American society. The book explains the social and economic forces that have undermined marriage for African Americans and that shape everyone's lives. It distills the best available research to trace the black marriage decline's far reaching consequences, including the disproportionate likelihood of abortion, sexually transmitted diseases, single parenthood, same sex relationships, polygamous relationships, and celibacy among black women.

This book centers on the experiences not of men or of the poor but of those black women who have surged ahead, even as black men have fallen behind. Theirs is a story that has not been told. Empirical evidence documents its social significance, but its meaning emerges through stories drawn from the lives of women across the nation. Is Marriage for White People? frames the stark predicament that millions of black women now face: marry down or marry out. At the core of the inquiry is a paradox substantiated by evidence and experience alike: If more black women married white men, then more black men and women would marry each other.

This book not only sits at the intersection of two large and well- established markets-race and marriage-it responds to yearnings that are widespread and deep in American society. The African American marriage decline is a secret in plain view about which people want to know more, intertwining as it does two of the most vexing issues in contemporary society. The fact that the most prominent family in our nation is now an African American couple only intensifies the interest, and the market. A book that entertains as it informs, Is Marriage for White People? will be the definitive guide to one of the most monumental social developments of the past half century.


  

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Review: Is Marriage for White People?: How the African American Marriage Decline Affects Everyone

User Review  - Joyce - Goodreads

I originally picked this up because I was startled by the title. I thought "isn't that a bit racist?". The book is very interesting and easy to read. For a woman of a certain age with marriage age ... Read full review

Review: Is Marriage for White People?: How the African American Marriage Decline Affects Everyone

User Review  - Brizreads - Goodreads

This book was a great read, very informative and gave great insight to marriage dilemmas and relationship dilemmas as well within the African American communities around the country. I would not only ... Read full review

Contents

From the Poor to the Middle Class
1857
Partial Explanations
1859
Living Free
1860
Unfulfilled Hopes
1861
Divorce
1864
Sex and Children
1865
The Emancipation of Marriage
1866
The Persistence of the Ideal
1867
Status Stereotypes and the White Standard of Beauty
1938
The Story Internet Dating Reveals
1939
Explaining the Preferences
1940
The Other Part of the Story
1942
I Didnt Think He Was Interested
1944
The Black Track
1946
Swag
1947
Culture Preservers
1949

The European Contrast
1868
The New Meaning of Marriage
1870
Incarceration
1873
The Interracial Marriage Gap
1876
The Success Gap
1879
The Value of a Degree
1880
White Follows Black
1884
Marriage and the Success Gap
1885
Man Sharing
1888
Distrust and Discord
1891
What Men Want
1893
Why Women Accept It
1894
Disease
1897
Unwed Childbearing
1901
The MiddleClass Predicament
1903
Marriage Without the Shotgun
1905
Childlessness
1907
Abortion
1910
White Follows Black Again
1913
The BlueCollar Brother
1915
Money Matters
1919
I Tried to Help
1920
Working Without a Script
1922
Adding Insult to Injury
1924
Cultural Divide
1927
Hope over Reason
1929
A Missing Piece of the Puzzle?
1932
Intimate Segregation
1934
An Historical Surprise
1935
The Consequences of Not Going Out
1937
Rebutting Inferiority
1951
Will His Family Accept Me?
1954
Can He Come to Dinner?
1957
The Exotic Adventure?
1959
Will He Understand?
1961
What About the Children?
1965
Assimilation Anxiety
1967
Change
1970
Going Natural
1975
Dark but Pretty
1978
The Paradox
1979
Books
1991
Journal Articles
2000
Reports and Papers
2009
Newspaper and Magazine Articles
2016
Cases
2024
Films
2025
CHAPTER 1
2028
CHAPTER 2
2033
CHAPTER 3
2037
CHAPTER 4
2046
CHAPTER 5
2051
CHAPTER 6
2055
CHAPTER 7
2057
CHAPTER 8
2058
CHAPTER 9
2061
CHAPTER 10
2063
CHAPTER 11
2064
Copyright

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About the author (2011)

Ralph Richard Banks is the Jackson Eli Reynolds Professor of Law at Stanford Law School, where he has taught about marriage, race, discrimination, and inequality since 1998. His writings have appeared in academic journals such as the Stanford Law Review and the Yale Law Journal and in popular publications such as The New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, and the Chicago Tribune. He lives in Palo Alto.

Bibliographic information