September 8, 2011

THE PUZZLE OF black women’s marriage patterns. “When the husband earns the bulk of the income, the spouses are equally likely to have final say about financial decisions. When the wife earns the bulk of the income, in contrast, the wife is twice as likely as the husband to have final say about financial decisions. This finding mirrors a pattern that I noticed among the couples whose stories I recount in the book: His earnings are joint, but her earnings are hers. This is but one aspect of the incomplete transformation of gender roles. . . . The prevalence of what I term marry down relationships thus contribute to striking racial disparities in divorce rates.”