Mar 4, 2019

Exploring the Meaning of Marriage with Stephanie Coontz

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Happiness, Marriage, Monogamy, Polygamy, Relationship


In this episode Mark Groves is joined by Stephanie Coontz, researcher, academic and author of seven books on marriage and family. They explore topics ranging from traditions, gender roles, the evolution of relationships in history and the more recent impacts of technology on relationships.

Stephanie Coontz teaches history and family studies at The Evergreen State College in Olympia, WA and is Director of Research and Public Education at the Council on Contemporary Families. She has authored seven books on marriage and family life, including A Strange Stirring: ‘The Feminine Mystique’ and American Women at the Dawn of the 1960s, The Way We Never Were: American Families and the Nostalgia Trap. Coontz is a frequent guest columnist for the New York Times and Selected articles and tv appearances can be found at


  • The history of marriage – what was it’s purpose?
  • The difference between love, relationships and marriage, what is the role of coercion?
  • What is the history of monogamy and polygamy?
  • The changing perspectives of being single, partnered, married and what is the role of gender here?
  • The role of tradition and gender, how does it impact on the happiness of a relationship? How egalitarian are couples and how does this impact on happiness?
  • Women having the courage to speak out and the #MeToo movement, how the times have changed.
  • How has technology changed relationships and marriages?