Courtship as a Waiting Game
In most times and places, women on average marry older men. The authors suggest a partial explanation. If the economi c roles of males are more specialized than those of females, the desirability of a female as a mate may become evident at an earlier age than is the case for males. Males with good prospects will wait unti l their economic success is revealed before choosing a bride. Those wi th poor prospects try to marry young. In equilibrium, the most desirabl e young females choose successful older males. The less desirable youn g females have no better option than to marry available young males. Copyright 1993 by University of Chicago Press.
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