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The Richer Sex: How the New Majority of Female Breadwinners Is Transforming Sex, Love and Family Hardcover – March 20, 2012

3.3 out of 5 stars 35 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews


“This thought-provoking exploration of the way women's expanding roles in the workplace is changing their lives at home is sure to create a stir. . . . Readable and poignant, Mundy's latest is the perfect starting-point for this timely conversation.”Publishers Weekly

“Liza Mundy has written a visionary, optimistic, inspiring book about the future of gender relations in America. She writes with verve, rigor and a keen sense for the unexpected. This is the rare book about the future that not only tells you where we’re headed by why we should want to arrive.” —Steve Coll, Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and president of the New America Foundation

“Liza Mundy has done something remarkable: she has taken all the major social and economic threads of the past decade, and woven them into a tapestry that explains, well . . . everything. About love, and sex, and family, and work, and the past and the future, and men and women and children. And she has not only written a book that’s important, but also one that's a great read.” —Lisa Belkin, author of First, Do No Harm and Life’s Work

“It is an exciting time to witness changing standards in family life: women in charge, men raising babies, both longing for passion and affection. In The Richer Sex, Liza Mundy asks the poignant questions of how and why these changes are occurring. She deftly examines who wins, who loses, and who is left on the battlefields of love, sex, and money.” —Dr. Justin R. Garcia, author and Research Fellow, The Kinsey Institute for Research in Sex, Gender, and Reproduction

“Will the world change once women make up the majority of breadwinners? It assuredly will, and Liza Mundy gives us a fascinating advance report on the sweeping transformations—in romance, economics, politics and family life—headed our way. They will make all our lives better, and Mundy is the first to bring us the good news.” —Annie Murphy Paul, author of Origins: How the Nine Months Before Birth Shape the Rest of Our Lives

“Ambitious . . . Separating The Richer Sex from earlier manifestos and exposés about women . . . is Mundy’s fresh reporting and the reams of new social science research she summarizes to make her case.” —Rachel Shteir, The New York Times Book Review

"A fascinating look at a trend that promises major social changes."Booklist

About the Author

Liza Mundy is the bestselling author of Michelle: A Biography and Everything Conceivable and is a staff writer at The Washington Post. She lives in Arlington, Virginia.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster (March 20, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1439197717
  • ISBN-13: 978-1439197714
  • Product Dimensions: 6.1 x 1 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (35 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,410,791 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By MZ on June 10, 2012
Format: Hardcover
I will keep this short. I read an excerpt of Mundy's book in Time magazine. Based on the strength of that article, I purchased the book. It turned out that the magazine article adequately captured her ideas about the changing roles of men and women in American society; there really isn't enough solid material here for a full book. Mundy starts off strong, profiling some real-life families with SAHDs (Stay-At-Home-Dads) and successful working moms. These families are functioning just fine, and I wish she had found more of them to feature in this book. Instead, Mundy spends most of the book describing a group of wealthy, shallow single women and their no-good boyfriends that have failed at work life. Are things really that simple? I don't think so, but Mundy attempts to make it look that way. Poor men and their depleting masculinity. But not to worry! They can still feel manly by taking over the kitchen. On page 240, Mundy writes that "women have boundless sexual craving for a man who knows how to make a decent omelet."

This isn't serious research. With too many mentions of reality television and masculine stereotypes, the entire book is diminished. Mundy ends up doing women a disservice with this book, in my view. She makes it sound like women are only after money and nice, shiny consumer products (and men are only after sex). I do agree that we are experiencing a significant change in gender roles, and therefore society itself. Mundy does make some valid points; however, a few valid arguments scattered throughout a lightweight book do not validate her thesis. Upon closer inspection of her premise, there is no "there" there. It remains to be explored by a real social scientist. In the meantime, serious women and men are already living it.
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Format: Hardcover
In the Era of Women, citizens might expect incisive and insightful works from our nation's thinkers as we explore the impact of the efforts of the past 40 years. Unfortunately, if we praise Mundy's Richer Sex, we would be doing ourselves a disfavor. Mundy profiles the "new way" of a new prime time character, the beta boyfriend, one who is no match for the high powered, high earning woman that is continuing the ascent to power. Most of the book outlines the path to glory for women who must deftly navigate the treacherous seas that is the scorned and fallen man. What Mundy fails to realize is that she ironically does nothing else than write this new woman as the "man" of yesteryear.

In true sociological fashion, Mundy gains the meat for her book in a series of interviews. However, we are missing the point of view of men who may be dissatisfied with their new role as homemakers and of course those who have nothing in common with the new dynamic. Mundy acknowledges two types: the straying males, who without the need to work, spend their days out cheating on their breadwinners, and the good boys, who creatively devise new ways to feel whole without the mythical "male" power. "Cinderella has been rewritten," she claims, as men need to get married to pull themselves out of destitution... seriously? With quotes like this, we become immediately aware that this is no book of cold, intellectual exploration, but merely a self-serving "girls power" treatise that has obvious goals outside of an honest discourse.

Since Mundy makes clear she is interested in a fun, imagination of dealing with beta males in the New Way, lets enjoy some more of her musings.
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Format: Hardcover
I need to start that I am a man, my wife does make more than me, have no kids (yet), and we both work full time. To make it short Mundy relies on alot of data, statistics and opinions of "experts" to make the case that men will become the new "house wives of old" and women the new "working dads of old". Though she interviews a diverse group of people she over emphasizes the couples that the dad stays home and the mom works as the wave of the future. It's like interviewing the happy Couples who participate in S & M and stating that these are the couples of tommorrow. Which of course is missing the big picture and over generalizes the issue.
Mundy relies to heavely on anecdotal data and it's predictions. She discounts other factors and takes data that shows trends and statistics on the rise for something and she makes it to be, to put it simple, like an out of controll juggernaut with no end in sight. Just like women rises in all areas of life it was due to many factors in their controll and out of their controll like the changes from and industrial economy to service based and how women were able to change the attitudes about being able to obtain there dreams has lead up to todays reallity.It's like going back to the fifties and see data on how men dominated everything at the time and taking statistics that showed men on the rise and making statements that it would never change and would be on the rise for every. At the time most couldn't predict the change in economy, the women's right movement and other social changes. But none of that stops Mundy for making grandiose claims about the new to come working family.
But my biggest complaint with the book is that she views marriage as a dictatorship not as a partnership.
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