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Marsh outlines challenges facing African American women

Marrying a less-educated partner can cost $25,000 per year

Low educational attainment among Black men stacks the deck against well-educated Black women who prefer to marry within their own ethnicity, writes J. Weston Phippen in National Journal. According to MPRC Faculty Associate Kris Marsh, "There's almost a triple dimension of issues [Black women] have to deal with. One, they have a low, and I quote this, 'out-marriage' rate. And two, if they do marry a Black man, they're more likely to marry someone less educated than themselves. And the other thing that's interesting is that [Black women] … are much more likely to not marry at all."

Real structural issues, such as higher rates of poverty, 17 times lower wealth compared with Whites, as well as higher rates of incarceration set the stage for this challenge. "Blacks by and large attend the country's worst schools, and are likelier to drop out before graduation, which has contributed to an environment where Black children are more likely to be born into poverty and where they are much less likely to escape it," Phippen notes.

See the complete National Journal article