NEW YORK (Realist English). Mass urbanization, increased life expectancy, the communication revolution and the women’s rights movement contributed to the creation of conditions that paved the way for a second demographic transition and an increase in the number of single people, especially in Europe and the United States, sociologist Elyakim Kislev notes.
“These trends were most noticeable and had a significant impact in developed Western countries, so it is not surprising that the largest number of single people are observed in Europe and the United States. Although single people have historically been marginalized in the West, today they are the fastest growing demographic group in many Western countries.” the sociologist notes.
The essence of the second demographic transition is the transition from the practice of limiting the size of offspring to optimizing the entire time space of demographic events and the life cycle in response to the transition of society into the post-industrial phase of development.
Kiselyov reminds that the trends towards “living alone” were already visible in the 1970s, when social factors pushed people away from marriage to “cohabitation” or to a “solitary lifestyle”:
“This was especially associated with the changing attitudes and social movements in the 1960s and 70s. In the USA, for example, already in the 1990 census, cohabitation with a non-spouse partner was included as a possible category.”
The sociologist emphasizes that cohabitation has become a generally accepted norm; more and more people prefer to marry later or decide not to start a family at all.
According to his observations, even when people want to get married, they face various obstacles, including economic instability and discrimination.