Divorce: A Social Interpretation

Divorce: A Social Interpretation

Divorce: A Social Interpretation

Divorce: A Social Interpretation

Excerpt

Divorce like death often is spoken of in a jocular vein, a manner of speech employed as a defense-mechanism against the shock of tragedy. Divorce is not the cause of marriage breakdown, but its result. As such, both in its personal and in its social aspects, it is one of the most serious problems of contemporary civilization and yet one least adequately apprehended and understood.

It is as an attempt to contribute to a better knowledge of the nature and of the significance of this problem that this book is presented. The causes of marriage dissolution ending in divorce lie deeply embedded in human nature, in the psycho-physical environment, and in the social order, hence the historical, the statistical, and the expository approaches to the interpretation of the phenomena. If the book makes any contribution to the solution of the problem, it will be as the result of a better comprehension of the total situation with which we have to deal.

Such portions of the material of this book as appeared in a previous monograph, "Divorce, a Study in Social Causation," which I submitted as a doctor's dissertation in Columbia University, copyrighted in 1909, are reproduced by permission of the Columbia University Press, for which my appreciation is acknowledged.

J. P. LICHTENBERGER.

UNIVERSITY OF PENNSYLVANIA, August, 1931.

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