Infidelity in Russia
Julia Ioffe has a fascinating article on the prevalence and increasing acceptability of infidelity in Russia:
20 years ago an affair was considered a career-wrecking scandal. But by 1998, a study showed that Russian men and women led their peers in 24 other countries in their willingness to engage in and approve of extramarital affairs. Since then, these attitudes have taken hold more deeply after a prolonged consumer boom that encourages Russians to indulge their whims and desires. What does this culture of infidelity look like, and what are the costs?
There are fewer numbers in here than I'd like, but this sort of thing probably isn't amenable to survey data. What it basically shows, however, is the degree to which economic reality drives moral judgments. Russia has 10 percent fewer men between ages 15 and 64 than women, it's quite poor given its level of development, and men are far better off. That's a pretty good recipe for a society in which male sexual preferences will win out, and because they win out, eventually become tacitly, if not explicitly, accepted.
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