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Books on marriage seem somehow to be rather unnecessary contributions to the literature of advice. People read them and then apparently marry without any reference to what they have read. The large majority of marriages take place without any intelligent selection on the part of either party. Popenoe believes, among other things, that the desire for children is the motive that influences many men in their marriages, and yet one wonders whether he has confused the sexual urge with the desire for children. He says that a census of men who were asked whether they would prefer health, wealth or beauty in marriage brought votes of seventy-nine for health, seventy-six for beauty and twenty-six for wealth, and yet physicians are inclined to believe that health is usually the last consideration in men's choice of women that they marry. The reason, of course, is that it is impossible without a complete
Modern Marriage. A Handbook. JAMA. 1925;85(8):632. doi:10.1001/jama.1925.02670080076036
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