The Marriage Problem: How Culture Has Weakened Families

James Q. Wilson, The Marriage Problem: How Culture Has Weakened Families (Harper Collins, 2002, 2003).

In The Marriage Problem, Wilson “attributes the troubling decline of marriage we see around us not to ‘the ’60s’–the all-purpose nemesis of the right–but to the very individualism Americans of all political persuasions so strenuously champion. The 1960s, he argues, represented not a sudden departure from American cultural traditions, but the magnification of a powerful element within that tradition. Like Tocqueville, he explored how the destructive features of American individualism had been tamed in the past, pointing out that assocations (such as the YMCA and temperance societies) were more effective than jeremiads in promoting the character traits upon which democracy rests.”
R. Shep Melnick (2012)