Prof Marcia Inhorn, Professor of Anthopolgy at Yale University, said professional women found themselves losing out in a game of “musical chairs” because there were simply too few men of the same calibre to go around.
Experts said “terrifying” demographic shifts had created a “deficit” of educated men and a growing problem of “leftover” professional women, with female graduates vastly outnumbering males in in many countries.
“There is a major gap – they are literally missing men. There are not enough college graduates for them. In simple terms, this is about an oversupply of educated women,” she said.
“These are highly educated, very successful women and one after another they were saying they couldn’t find a partner. How could it be that all these amazing, attractive intelligent women were lamenting about their ability to find a partner?” she said.
“The answer comes in the demographics – growing disparities in the education levels of men and women.
In short: women prefer men who are more educated than them, but as women are slowly becoming the more educated sex they are finding fewer educated men to partner up with. What to do?
The anthropologist suggested some women might need to be prepared to compromise some of their standards in order to find love.
One of the primary reasons middle-aged women are single is because they have an unrealistic idea of the sort of man they can attract. If you could solve this problem you’d not be writing newspaper columns, you’d be drinking gin on your mega-yacht. Fun though Sex in the City was, it ought not to be viewed as a documentary.
But she suggested society should act to increase the number of men going into higher education.
How’s that going to square with the relentless campaigns to put more women in the ranks of corporate management? As I said here, it is these very policies which are putting men off higher education and corporate life in the first place.
“It may be about rethinking the way we approach this,” she said.
“Most women who are educated would like to have an educated partner. Traditionally women have also wanted to ‘marry up’ to go for someone more successful, financially well off.”
“Maybe women need to be prepared to be more open to the idea of a relationship with someone not as educated.
Quite. I think it’s high time educated, intelligent women learned to love the slow-witted manual labourer just as us men are encouraged to love the ageing fatty.
Tell me, oh modern, non-shallow, non-materialistic woman: just what is wrong with you, a high-flying corporate lawyer, dating a builder? Aren’t we past all that gender role stuff in 2017? My pal Smiffy is dying to meet you, he’s the one over there with the cement stuck in his eyebrows.
Some women were paying a high price for feminism, she suggested.
You think? If only someone had warned them.
“As a feminist I think it’s great that women are doing so well but I think there has been a cost that has been paid,” she said, warning that many had been left in “sadness and isolation”.
Makes you wonder how many knew the costs before they were cajoled into it by the sisterhood, doesn’t it?
In some cases, the women taking part in the in-depth interviews said they would be happy to be in a relationship with someone less educated, but they felt they were “intimidating” to the men who were available.
So modern women, having quite deliberately positioned themselves to out-compete men in every field, now find they intimidate men. What did they think would happen?
About a year ago I met a corporate high-flyer here in Paris, a well-educated, smart Frenchwoman who was also rather attractive. She was single, and explained a lot of men were so put off by her lofty status in a giant, well-known corporation that she was reluctant to tell them what she did. I assumed this was down to some innate desire of men to be of higher status than their partner, but once I got to know her I changed my mind on that. Basically, the character traits required to gain the high ranks of a modern corporation are not the ones a man wants to see in a partner, i.e. a ball-breaker.
This might be as much about men being turned off by the personalities of high-flying women as women not wanting to date less-educated men. I suspect it is both, working simultaneously.
(H/T Tim Worstall)