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Men and Marriage Paperback – July 31, 1992

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Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

"Men and Marriage . . . is an outstandingly important and well-argued book."National Review

Drug Addiction, lack of education, welfare, children in poverty, violence, unemployment, single-parent homes-these critical problems facing our country today. Many ideas have been presented regarding the cause of these problems, but only George Gilder speaks directly and with authority about their one undeniable source: the disintegration of the American family.
Men and Marriage examines the loss of the family and the well-defined sex roles it used to offer and how this loss has changed the focus of our society. Poverty, for instance, comes from the destruction of the family when single parents are abandoned by their lovers or older women are suddenly divorced because society approves of the husband's new, younger girlfriend. Gilder claims that men will only own up to their paternal obligations when the women lead them to do so and that this civilizing influence, balanced with, proper economic support, is the most important part of maintaining a productive, healthy, loving society. He offers a concrete plan of action for rebuilding the family in America. His solutions challenge readers to return to these roles and reestablish those family values which were once so crucial in staving off the ills that plague our country.

--This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

About the Author

George Gilder is author of several books on social and economic issues. He was a speech writer for President Reagan and now writes regularly for the Wall Street Journal and Harpers.


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Pelican Publishing; Rev Exp edition (July 31, 1992)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0882899465
  • ISBN-13: 978-0882899466
  • Product Dimensions: 1 x 6 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (41 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #862,585 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

159 of 171 people found the following review helpful By Stephen N. Shields on July 6, 2000
Format: Paperback
Men and Marriage benefits the modern reader in a number of ways. Providing excellent data and analysis on males and females in modern society, the book enables its reader to better understand the modern controversy over men and women's respective roles in society. Gilder feels that one of modern society's key problems is its denials of the differences between the sexes and, as a logical corollary, its denial of appropriate roles. He writes, "Though rejecting feminist politics and lesbian posturing, American culture has absorbed the underlying ideology like a sponge. The principal tenets of sexual liberation or sexual liberalism--the obsolescence of masculinity and femininity, of sex roles, and of heterosexual monogamy as the moral norm--have diffused through the system and become part of America's conventional wisdom." Gilder has also performed an invaluable service by providing relevant material for couples and singles. Gilder wants the single woman to u! nderstand that if she decides to sacrifice her twenties on the altar of career, she could easily find herself a celibate priest serving that altar for the rest of her life. Gilder reports that Yale and Harvard sociologists, after analyzing census data, concluded that a woman who waits until her mid-thirties only has a 5% chance of getting married. The author also has much to say to the single man. Of the most unique and striking of Gilder's observations on the sexes is his contention that the average single man struggles with an inherent irresponsibility that only marriage can cure. While this assertion may have had a secure, albeit covert, place in yesterday's conventional wisdom, Gilder boldly presents the thesis with impressive statistical support.Read more ›
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58 of 62 people found the following review helpful By Charles Bevel on July 7, 2006
Format: Hardcover
I agree with a lot of what previous posters have said but would like to add that Mr. Gilder is indeed a gifted writer. The book is replete with "laugh-out-loud" witicism interspersed between salient point after salient point. I loved it.

As an African American who grew up in a working class neighborhood which, over the 20 years since my departure, has deteriorated almost to the point of "ghetto", I can say unequivocally that whatever Gilder points out concerning the general population indeed goes triple for the African American community. If America has drunken the feminist "kool-aid" and relegated husbandhood and fatherhood to the trash heap of obselescence, the black community has taken said "kool-aid" intravenously...and it shows!

Thanks Mr. Gilder for you engaging contribution to sanity.
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48 of 51 people found the following review helpful By Andrew Cort, author of THE DOOR IS OPEN on April 12, 2008
Format: Paperback
This book received a lot of flack when it first came out. The demand for equality among men and women was finally being accepted as a proper ideal for a civilized society, and anyone who disagreed was deservedly shouted down. But amidst the great din, it was presumed with terrible shallowness that any thoughtful challenge was traitorous activity (This, unfortunately, is often still the case.) George Gilder was one of the first to point out that 'equality' does not mean 'sameness', that acknowledging the equality of women does not mean that men and women think, feel, or ought to act, in the same ways, or that it is 'bad' to examine the question of whether there might be gender roles that are indeed sensible, virtuous, and possibly even wonderful. As we look back over the years since the feminist movement began, we cannot honestly say that the changes we have made have made everyone happy. It is worth going back and taking a calm, thoughtful, fresh look at the challenges that George Gilder raised in this book.
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25 of 26 people found the following review helpful By Gerard Reed on April 2, 2009
Format: Paperback
Years ago George Gilder published Sexual Suicide, then revised and expanded and renamed it Men and Marriage (Gretna, LA: Pelican Publishing Company, c. 1986). Gilder is better known for his work on economics, Wealth and Poverty, a supply-side manifesto widely discussed in the 1980's, but as a professional writer he has addressed a wide variety of social issues, including sexuality. And though his presentation has religious overtones, his argument is mainly philosophical and pragmatic.
First he focuses on "the facts of life." No issue needs more attention, Gilder argues, than that of men and marriage, for our hedonistic culture encourages men to behave irresponsibly. The oft-touted sexual revolution, praised in some circles for liberating women, has fundamentally freed men from family ties and obligations. Unattached, predatory males endanger our civilization--as do vandals and gang members on urban streets. Historians and anthropologists assure us that men, in every culture, have found their identity in providing for women and children. Women conceive and bear and nurture children as an inescapable biological reality. Their role is fixed. Men, however, need marriage to find their role. "The crucial process of civilization is the subordination of male sexual impulses and biology to the long-term horizons of female sexuality" (p. 5). Thus the health of any society depends upon the health and durability of its marriages.
Resisting those who willfully blur sexual distinctions, who naively assert (in highly utopian ways) that sexual differences are cultural rather than biological, Gilder insists there are indeed ineradicable differences which must be recognized and respected.
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