Alex--When you point out that there are many old immature people, you may be on to part of the reason that a larger proportion of second marriages end in divorce than first ones. (Of course, some people in bad first marriages would never get divorced for religious or other reasons--so that tends to inflate the divorce statistics for second and subsequent marriages.)

Mark White--Very interesting. Economic and other social science analyses help to throw light on the logic of what otherwise appear to be arbitrary variations in social forms. You might want to qualify "voluntarily leave the decision up to family elders (and 'marriage brokers')" to recognize that individuals may be responding to multiple elements--religious beliefs, family pressures, and cultural traditions--as well as to information asymmmetries.

Anonymous--I'm glad you liked the piece. A writer is always pleased to hear that a reader thought that an article was on target.

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