Shifting mores/morals follow economics??

bswivbswiv Posts: 7,614 Admiral
A bit of history to start the day.

The rules of love, Ms Weigel argues, are shaped by economics. The concept of “dating” only came about at the dawn of the industrial age, when new opportunities lured young people to cities in droves. Working women were soon exposed to an array of potential mates, but many lived in tenements or boarding houses that were unfit for hosting callers. So men offered to escort romantic prospects to restaurants or dance halls, luring poorly paid women with the prospect of a “free treat”. Policing vice squads initially found these transactions suspect, and often arrested ladies who partook in them. But as these practices spread among the working classes, saloons and amusement parks sprang up to earn their business. By the mid-1910s even the middle classes considered “dating” a legitimate way to woo.

Shifting demographics also played a role. Falling birth-rates allowed parents to dote on fewer children, who were increasingly likely to go to school. Young people began mixing in new ways, particularly once American colleges went co-ed in the 1920s. Cars granted young lovers unprecedented privacy, leading one University of Michigan professor to sniff in 1928: “What is vulgarly known as ‘petting’ is the rule rather than the exception.” Perhaps it is the destiny of parents to be horrified by the habits of their children. In the 1950s many were appalled that young people were “going steady” when they should have been dutifully shopping around. Yet a shortage of American men after the second world war made it wiser for women to get cosy with one instead of playing the field.

The rest is here..............
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