Deinstitutionalization of Marriage Essay

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Deinstitutionalization of Marriage Summary Andrew Cherlin describes differences in American marriages over the last several decades. He describes this process as the “deinstitutionalization of marriage.” He states the standards for marriage are more flexible for couples beginning in World War 2, bring along with it, they base this off of their wants and needs rather than the set standards brought from society. Cherlin also discusses the transition from companionate marriages, where people marry for the bearing of children and money, to an individualization marriage where people marry for love and individual needs. American marriages began as institutionalized marriages in which our elders taught us from a young age taking in the unspoken social norms associated with being a husband or wife. One expected to hold a particular role as either a breadwinner or homemaker. Soon after, institutionalized marriage evolved into companion marriage where we marry based of off love and the want for others. As stated before, companion marriage is all about two people coming together for reasons other than just their needs. This companion marriage started the individualized marriage becoming a part of the marriage transition as well as breaking social norms. Cherlin describes individualized marriage as having the goal of a self-fulfilling status. In other words, it is about being in a relationship for one’s own individual needs and benefits. Our final transition of marriage includes today's symbolic values as well as what marriage has offered us individually. Marriages of today allow individuals to experience more forms of marriage, such as it being socially acceptable living with their partner(s). Along with the many options of marriage, the roles of husbands and wives are more flexible and negotiable, unlike before where this would have been

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