A Cultural Relative Analysis of Black Women and Marriage

Brittany M. Hamner


Recent studies show that Black women are among the least likely to be married. While Black women are ultimately affected, the issue must equally be examined in terms of their cultural counterparts: Black men. Guided by the Cultural Relativity Theory, which states that an individual’s belief and activities should be understood in terms of his or her own culture, this paper hypothesizes that the trend of the decline in marriage among Black women is due to the state of marriage in America, the social and economic status of Black women, and current racial patterns of the Blacks as they relate to interracial dating. By employing document analysis and observational techniques, data were collected from books, journals, and the Internet augmented by expert interviews. Black women between the ages of 23 and 30, 25 being the average age of first marriage in the United States, were surveyed on their current relationships and socioeconomic statuses. The data were qualitatively and quantitatively analyzed. The findings suggest that tenable conclusions and suggestions can be drawn as to why this trend exists.


Black Women, Marriage, Cultural Relativity

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