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5/25/2005 01:25:00 PM | Timothy

Women Taking Men's Last Names: Discuss
Matt Yglesias says:
As I was saying the other day, I think economics and rational choice and so forth are just great. But if Tyler Cowen really thinks he can discuss why women are much more likely than men to adopt their spouse's name at marriage as a strategic bargaining question without any reference to social history well, let's just say he'd better think a little harder about that. I think it's pretty clear that we've got a hefty dose of path-dependence and historically-determined expectations operating here.

For the record, I take an extremist line on this question. Adopting your husband's name isn't the worst thing in the world to do, but it's still wrong. And, no, feminism isn't all about choices. It's about equality. And, yes, given the historical dynamic changing names is often the individually rational thing to do in a self-interested sense. But right and wrong isn't about self-interest. Now, no more posts today, it's time for some birthday celebratin' but feel free to condemn my extremist (and under-explained!) view on this.



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