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Being single in your 30s isn't bad luck, it's a global phenomenon

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https://qz.com/1443640/being-single-in-your-30s-isnt-bad-luck-its-a-global-phenomenon/

qz.com

Being single in your 30s isn't bad luck, it's a global phenomenon
Researcher Nancy Smith-Hefner was chatting to university students in the city of Yogyakarta, Indonesia, when she noticed a trend. In a country with near "universal marriage," where only 2% of women in their late 40s are estimated to have never married, young women were saying they wanted to finish their education and embark on fulfilling careers before getting hitched.

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The phenomenon of "waithood"

Across the globe, women are increasingly experiencing waithood, a term that refers to delaying decisions, like finishing an education and embarking on a career before getting married. 

T...

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The problem is mostly economic

Young men across large parts of the world are holding back from relationships and starting families because of unemployment and low wages. This is especially true in places where high dowry payment...

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A growing trend

The situation of singledom is increasing in women globally. 

  • In a range of places, women are becoming the majority of students at university over men, and desire to engage ...

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The searching game

More and more educated and ambitious women are finding themselves unable to find the mate that they want at the time they’re searching.

The kind of men they are searching for, ready to commit...

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To wait or not to wait

  • 15% of American adults use dating apps
  • In a predominantly Muslim culture like Indonesia, some are turning to matchmakers, or to events that offer introductions to potential p...

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Our culture of work

Our culture claims that work is unavoidable and natural. The idea that the world can be freed from work, wholly or in part, has been suppressed for as long as capitalism has existed.

Exploring the abolition of work

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  • In 1930, John Maynard Keynes predicted that advances in technology would lead to an age of leisure where people might work 15 hours a week.
  • Since the early 2010s, these ideas have been developed further, creating a growing critique of work as an ideology, and exploring alternatives to work.
  • Post-work offers enormous promises: In a life of much less work, life would be calmer, more equal, more communal, more pleasurable, more thoughtful, more politically engaged, more fulfilled.

Work ideology

The work ideology is not natural nor very old.

  • Before the modern era, all cultures thought of work as a means to an end, not an end in itself.
  • Once the modern work ethic was established, working patterns started to shift. Between 1800 and 1900, the average working week shrank from 80 hours to 60 hours, and in the 1970s to roughly 40 hours.
  • In 1979, Bernard Lefkowitz related in his book that people who had given up their jobs reported feelings of "wholeness." During the same period, because wages were high enough, it became possible for most people to work less.
  • During the 80s, work ideology was reimposed by aggressively pro-business governments who were motivated by a desire for social control.
  • By the early 21st century, the work culture seems inescapable.

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    Conspiracy Theories

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    We Love A Good Story

    The organic and unpredictable nature of conspiracy theories had led many researchers to investigate the cause of the phenomenon.

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    • Human beings think and understand in stories. For thousands of years, fairy tales, legends, anecdotes and mysteries have helped our brains make sense of the world.

    Collective Hysteria

    Every society has its own, unique anxieties and obsessions, and the conspiracy theories that gain good mileage are the ones that tap into these primal fears.

    Example: Many people fear vaccination of the children due to fears that the mass drive to vaccinate such a large population has some ulterior motive, like a mass medical experiment. The dodgy past record of the health care system, and the fact that the vaccination is free of charge, of course, adds fuel to the fire.

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