The Public Interest

The benefits of marriage

Steven Flanders

Summer 1996

IN a sane or sensible society, marriage is more an answer than a question. Of course, it is never the only answer: In any culture, a noticeable minority never marry, some because they resist for their own reasons what their culture and their families urge upon them and others for want of the right opportunity. But I venture to say that for most of humanity, past and present, the only real question here is when, or to whom. Whether to marry has been little more a question than whether to be born or whether to die.

Download a PDF of the full article.


to your National Affairs subscriber account.

Already a subscriber? Activate your account.


Unlimited access to intelligent essays on the nation’s affairs.

Subscribe to National Affairs.