Hook Up Culture

685 Words3 Pages
Due to vast societal changes in the American 20th and 21st centuries, intimate life, from the perspective of the most recent generations, has evolved drastically. American youth has grown up in diverse households, witnessed the deterioration of gender roles, and have been effected by the longevity of today’s educational system. “The Social Construction of Sexuality” by Steven Seidman narrows in on the youth’s role in hook up culture, intimacies after college, and intimacy and parenthood among the poor. Hooking up is a type of temporary connection, often involving erotic intimacy, but minimal obligations and commitments (Seidman, 145). This behavior and expression of intimacy has replaced the dating culture in college and stems from the idea…show more content…
Men and women differ in how they negotiate work and family in terms of balancing autonomy and intimacy (Seidman, 152). To provide further evidence, Kathleen Gerson, author of “The Unfinished Revolution,” divides women into two groups: those who prioritize family (traditionalists) and those who prioritize independent economic stability (self-reliant). Gerson observes that majority of women, across race and class, prefer to be self-reliant. These women still aspire to be in intimate relationships but expect career support from their male partner. These findings are unlike those from previous generations and are rooted in the entrance of women into the work force. Because women are entering the work force and want their male partners to be involved parents, men must find a balance between work and family as well. Generally, men remain in the breadwinner role as they see it as part of their identity. However, Gerson reports that 30% rejected the primary breadwinning role and expect their partner to be self supporting, an idea unheard of thirty years…show more content…
For many young, poor women, being a mother is not always associated with marriage. Kathryn Edin and Maria Kefalas spent six years in poor communities in New Jersey and Philadelphia interviewing heterosexual women of white, black and hispanic races with an average age of 25. Their incomes were less than $16,000 a year and had few opportunities for well-paying careers, economic stability high social status or marriage. However motherhood can be chosen and is a chance to excel at something while gaining respect in their communities. These women desire to be good mothers, mothers that provide and protect their child. Young poor men have similar reasons for entering into fatherhood; they hope to be viewed as responsible and potentially redeem their part of drugs, violence and
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