How do I avoid marriage in life

"Schlaffer created a physiognomy for women as thinkers." Mara Delius, Welt am Sonntag, 13.3.11

"Schlaffer has written a brilliant cultural-historical analysis, which is also based on her own and her generation 'verifiable reality'." Sonja Margolina, Die Welt, 03/12/11

"A clever book on 'The Intellectual Marriage' as a modern, sophisticated form of partnership. ... A stimulating and very easy-to-read book." Christine Pries, Frankfurter Rundschau, 03/15/11

"What seems rather dry in the résumé becomes lively and exciting in Schlaffer's presentation, as she always looks at her subject in the light of beautiful literature." Kristina Maidt-Zinke, SÃŒddeutsche Zeitung, April 20th, 2011

"Hannelore Schlaffer has written an illuminating and honest book about modern relationships." Regula Freuler, NZZ on Sunday, April 24th, 2011

"A great book." Denis Scheck, hot off the press, May 29, 2011

"â € œAn elegant essayâ €". Constanze Neumann, Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, July 9th, 2011

Hannelore Schlaffer, born in WÃŒrzburg in 1939, lives in Stuttgart. She was a professor for modern German literature in Munich, is a freelancer for various daily newspapers (FAZ, SZ, NZZ) and author of essays critical of culture.

Prolog. Reprinted with the kind permission of the copyright holder. All rights reserved.

The possibilities of realizing erotic needs are now numerous, and all are equal. Marriage priority no longer exists, but preference for it does. That is more surprising today than ever. The media did and still does a lot to uphold the traditional ideal of marriage, family and parenthood. Princely houses no longer rule in their country, but only over the emotional life of inexperienced girls and disappointed women. The English princely couple Diana and Charles were a bad investment in this regard, but perhaps even turned the consciousness of the recipients of this marital bliss and misfortune. The task of portraying the happy couple, which they initially got involved in, was ultimately betrayed disgracefully and brought the media closer to reality. The last royal chance to restore splendor to traditional marriage had been wasted. Since then, it is more the love life that feeds media poetry, marriage is increasingly becoming a special problem in sociology.
Many swear words have been deleted from the dictionary of marriage in the last few decades: the wild marriage, the old maid, the pride of the hail, the green widow, the cuckold, the house idiot, the henpecked, the horned, the xanthippe , the house friend, the mother hen, the mother monkey, the late girl, the married cripple, the house devil, the house cross, the pasha, the house dragon. The language adjustment speaks for a humanization of the partnership relationships. On the other hand, new terms have emerged that show the variety of possible emotional models: the bond, the partnership, the partner, the leader of the stage of life, the cohabitation, the temporary marriage, the serial monogamy. Marriage as such no longer seems to exist; Only an adjective explains what kind of relationship it is: a partnership, a comradely, a conventional, a modern or an intellectual marriage?
Nowadays marriage is an option, no longer, because all functions that were once connected with it and only possible in it can now be outsourced: sexuality, care, bringing up children, living community, the social contact. Canteens and bistros, kindergartens and day-care centers, single apartments and shared apartments, city festivals and parties take on the traditional tasks that were once taken over by the couple. The form of society that is publicly represented is not the family (which is why it has become distinctive and fashionable for married women to flaunt their babies in cafes, museums and restaurants), but the group consisting of singles Children, widows, retirees, lonely women can exist. From the cradle to the grave, the citizen is now provided with knowledge and entertainment in groups by entrusting himself to a guide, the teacher, the museum educator, the tour guide. Not the couple, but the troop is the smallest unit of society. However, he only comes together for temporary pleasure and without further commitment. His role model is the team that works together responsibly. However, life in a team, in which a large part of society spends most of the day due to their job, consumes a lot of time and requires more concentration than the partner, no matter how maritally loved. Erotic relationships can arise in a team, friendships, discussion groups and leisure groups - in any case, they occupy the individual subject just as multifariously as the couple relationship.
The experiments with intellectual marriage show society on the path to happiness that is not easy to come by. Beyond the transformation of marriage, this historic effort brought a new openness to all areas of life: the experiment itself has become a way of life. Marriage has lost its prestige as an institution - neither men nor women see their life as a failure if they do not marry - but the inner bond between the partners is even closer and more binding if it is entered into.

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