2017年10月27日 星期五

How Did Marriage Become a Mark of Privilege?結婚率降低、生育率卻沒降 結婚如何成了優勢標誌?

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2017/11/03 第190期 訂閱/退訂看歷史報份
紐時周報精選 How Did Marriage Become a Mark of Privilege?結婚率降低、生育率卻沒降 結婚如何成了優勢標誌?
Can Hollywood Movies About Climate Change Make a Difference?敵人就是我們自己 好萊塢拍得出夠分量的氣候變遷電影?
How Did Marriage Become a Mark of Privilege?結婚率降低、生育率卻沒降 結婚如何成了優勢標誌?
文/Claire Cain Miller

Marriage, which used to be the default way to form a family in the United States, regardless of income or education, has become yet another part of American life reserved for those who are most privileged.

Fewer Americans are marrying overall, and whether they do so is more tied to socioeconomic status than ever before. In recent years, marriage has sharply declined among people without college degrees, while staying steady among college graduates with higher incomes.



Currently, 26 percent of poor adults, 39 percent of working-class adults and 56 percent of middle- and upper-class adults are married, according to a research brief published from two think tanks, the American Enterprise Institute and Opportunity America.

In 1990, more than half of adults were married, with much less difference based on class and education: 51 percent of poor adults, 57 percent of working-class adults and 65 percent of middle- and upper-class adults were married.



A big reason for the decline: Unemployed men are less likely to be seen as marriage material.

"Women don't want to take a risk on somebody who's not going to be able to provide anything," said Sharon Sassler, a sociologist at Cornell who published "Cohabitation Nation: Gender, Class, and the Remaking of Relationships" with Amanda Jayne Miller last month.



As marriage has declined, though, childbearing has not, which means that more children are living in families without two parents and the resources they bring.

"The sharpest distinction in American family life is between people with a bachelor's or not," said Andrew Cherlin, a sociologist at Johns Hopkins and author of "Labor's Love Lost: The Rise and Fall of the Working-Class Family in America."



Just over half of adolescents in poor and working-class homes live with both their biological parents, compared with 77 percent in middle- and upper-class homes, according to the research brief, by W. Bradford Wilcox and Wendy Wang of the Institute for Family Studies. Thirty-six percent of children born to a working-class mother are born out of wedlock, versus 13 percent of those born to middle- and upper-class mothers.

The research brief defined "working class" as adults with an adjusted family income between the 20th and 50th percentiles, with high school diplomas but not bachelor's degrees. Poor is defined as those below the 20th percentile or without high school diplomas, and the middle and upper class as those above the 50th percentile or with college degrees.





文章主要討論大學學位(college degree, bachelor's degree)對美國人婚姻(marriage)的影響。文中的工人階級 (working class)因只有高中畢業,收入(income)較低,因此較難步入婚姻,近幾年結婚率因此陡降(sharply decline),反觀中產階級(middle-class)和上層階級(upper-class)的結婚率則維持穩定(stay steady)。

工人階級因此在婚姻中喪失優勢、特權(privilege),成為部分基本權利被剝奪、弱勢的一群(the underprivileged),而中產和上層階級則成了享有特權與優勢的一群(the privileged),文章標題因此稱婚姻成了優勢的標誌(mark of privilege)。

Can Hollywood Movies About Climate Change Make a Difference?敵人就是我們自己 好萊塢拍得出夠分量的氣候變遷電影?
文/Melena Ryzik

How do you tell a story about the destruction of the world?

Movie- and TV-makers know how to do it with aliens, of course, or suggest it with invented political intrigue and rogue leaders. But capturing the real global threat of climate change is far harder than filming any spaceship landing. Just ask Darren Aronofsky, whose recent thriller, "Mother!," buried his climate-change message in allegory.


電影與電視製作人當然知道如何以外星人來講述世界毀滅的故事,或以虛構的政治陰謀與乖僻的領導人當故事背景。不過,捕捉真實的全球氣候變遷威脅遠比拍攝任何太空船登陸畫面要困難。這一點, 去問近來推出驚悚片《母親!》、將他的氣候變遷訊息埋藏於寓言中的戴倫.亞洛諾夫斯基就能知道。

"It's really tough," said Fisher Stevens, the filmmaker and actor. "It's not a very sexy subject, and people just don't want to deal with it and think about it."

But getting Hollywood movies about climate change made is not easy. And when they do refer to it — as did the Roland Emmerich 2004 disaster flick "The Day After Tomorrow" — they rarely do much to galvanize the public to action. Even well-intentioned filmmakers with carefully drafted cautionary tales often miss the mark, climate scientists say.



Part of the problem is simply plot, said Per Espen Stoknes, the author of "What We Think About When We Try Not to Think About Global Warming."

"As opposed to terrorism or drugs, there is no clear enemy with climate change," he said. "We're all participating in the climate crisis — if there is an enemy, it's us. And it's hard to go to war against ourselves."



And when climate change is depicted on-screen, it is often in an onslaught of fire and brimstone, an apocalyptic vision that hardly leaves room for a hopeful human response. That, climate researchers and social scientists say, is exactly the wrong message to give.

But that is just the kind of high-stakes film that Hollywood loves to produce — like "The Day After Tomorrow," which depicted New York City as a frozen dystopian landscape. Or "Geostorm," due Oct. 20, in which the climate goes apocalyptically haywire, thanks to satellites that malfunction.



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