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A rational choice theory of midlife crises

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  • Liqun Liu

    ()
    (Texas A&M University)

  • Andrew J. Rettenmaier

    ()
    (Texas A&M University)

  • Thomas R. Saving

    ()
    (Texas A&M University)

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    Abstract

    This paper models the midlife crisis as a decision on whether and when to realize a life dream, incorporating the key components of three psychology theories of midlife crises. It explains why a crisis (dream realization) tends to occur in the midlife if it occurs at all. Other results include that one either realizes his dream fully or not at all, that a shorter life expectancy makes a midlife crisis more likely, and that “crazier” dreams tend to be postponed to a later time in life.

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    File URL: http://www.accessecon.com/Pubs/EB/2012/Volume32/EB-12-V32-I1-P6.pdf
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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by AccessEcon in its journal Economics Bulletin.

    Volume (Year): 32 (2012)
    Issue (Month): 1 ()
    Pages: 51-58

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    Handle: RePEc:ebl:ecbull:eb-11-00024

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    Related research

    Keywords: midlife crisis; dream; aging; death;

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    1. Eeckhoudt, Louis R & Hammitt, James K, 2001. " Background Risks and the Value of a Statistical Life," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, Springer, vol. 23(3), pages 261-79, November.
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