Monday, April 02, 2012

Manhattan Singles are a Life Stage, Not a Lifestyle

Eric Klinenberg, in Going Solo, notes that half of Manhattan households are made up of people living alone.  New York is certainly the capital of solo living in this country.  But they are not really representative of future trends elsewhere.

Many young people go to New York to try to make it big, or just to experience the cosmopolitan life - for awhile.  Then they pick a more realistic option elsewhere, or marry and move to the suburbs, or run through their trust fund or parental subsidy.

I think the fact that Klinenberg is a professor at New York University in Greenwich Village gives him a distorted view of how common, or sustainable, solo living is.

1 comment:

Optimist said...

According to the data in the link below (from the Pew Research Center) the percentage of adults who are married in America is at a record low. However 61% of the "never married"s would like to marry. To me, this indicates that there is something in our society stopping those who would like to marry from doing so. That force is making "going solo" a default choice that a growing number of people must be chosing. I don't believe this is just a "life stage". I believe that economic forces and societal norms that can't keep up with changing society are making a worthy marriage partner more difficult for many to find. Not that "going solo" is better, but some variation of a non-married life is becoming a more attractive option for many who who would prefer marriage, but for whatever reason, marriage is becoming less available.