Dating mate selection
In this respect, it is important to note the contributions of scholars such as Bernard Murstein (1974, 1976) who have pointed out the importance of cultural and historical effects on courtship systems that lead to marriage.Historical evidence suggests that, as a society modernizes, changes in the courtship system reflect a movement toward autonomous courtship systems.In theory, when a shortage of women occurs in society, marriage and monogamy are valued.But when there are greater numbers of women, marriage as an institution and monogamy itself take on lesser importance.Attention has been placed on social and cultural background characteristics such as age, social class, race, religion, and educational level.Before considering individual background characteristics and interpersonal dynamics of the mate selection process, it is important to note the increasing attention given to the marriage market and the marriage squeeze.Both of these perspectives generate an abundance of knowledge concerning mate selection.
Of course, family sociologists are quick to point out that the term ”love marriage” is somewhat of a misnomer, since many other factors operate in the mate selection process.
” On one level, the study of mate selection is conducted from the perspective of family as a social institution.
Emphasis is placed on the customs that regulate choice of mates.
But changes in contemporary gender roles suggest that as women gain an economic viability of their own, they are less likely to seek marriage partners (Waite and Spitze 1981).
Thus, the marriage market and the units of exchange are not constant but subject to substantial variation in terms of structure and selection criteria.