ERIC KLINENBERG GOING SOLO PDF

He spoke with Joseph Stromberg. How did you first get involved in researching this topic? My first book was about a heat wave in Chicago where more than people died, in , and when I was doing research on the book I learned that one reason so many people died, and also died alone during that disaster, is that so many people were living alone in Chicago everyday. And during the research for that book, I got to spend some time learning about the rise of living alone, and specifically aging alone. And I got interested in the phenomenon, and concerned about the social problem of being alone and also isolated. So when I finished, I started thinking about a next project that would continue the theme, and I got funding from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation to do a bigger follow up study on living alone and social isolation in American life.

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Open Preview See a Problem? Details if other :. Thanks for telling us about the problem. Return to Book Page. Preview — Going Solo by Eric Klinenberg. A revelatory examination of the most significant demographic shift since the Baby Boom - the sharp increase in the number of people who live alone - that offers surprising insights on the benefits of this epochal change.

In , only 22 percent of American adults were single. Today, more than 50 percent of American adults are single, and 31 million, roughly one out of eve A revelatory examination of the most significant demographic shift since the Baby Boom - the sharp increase in the number of people who live alone - that offers surprising insights on the benefits of this epochal change. Today, more than 50 percent of American adults are single, and 31 million, roughly one out of every seven adults, live alone.

People who live alone make up 28 percent of all U. In Going Solo , renowned sociologist and author Eric Klinenberg proves that these numbers are more than just a passing trend. They are, in fact, evidence of the biggest demographic shift since the Baby Boom: we are learning to go solo, and crafting new ways of living in the process. Though conventional wisdom tells us that living by oneself leads to loneliness and isolation, Klinenberg shows that most solo dwellers are deeply engaged in social and civic life.

In fact, compared with their married counterparts, they are more likely to eat out and exercise, go to art and music classes, attend public events and lectures, and volunteer. Drawing on over three hundred in-depth interviews with men and women of all ages and every class, Klinenberg reaches a startling conclusion: in a world of ubiquitous media and hyperconnectivity, this way of life can help us discover ourselves and appreciate the pleasure of good company.

With eye-opening statistics, original data, and vivid portraits of people who go solo, Klinenberg upends conventional wisdom to deliver the definitive take on how the rise of living alone is transforming the American experience. Going Solo is a powerful and necessary assessment of an unprecedented social change.

Get A Copy. Hardcover , pages. Published February 2nd by Penguin Press first published January 1st More Details Other Editions Friend Reviews.

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. To ask other readers questions about Going Solo , please sign up. Lists with This Book. Community Reviews. Showing Average rating 3. Rating details. More filters. Sort order. May 03, Cari rated it liked it Recommended to Cari by: Elaine. Shelves: , cultural-studies , self-discovery. So it's like this: I'm a member of one of the demographic groups Klinenberg focused on while writing Going Solo. I'm a professional, middle class woman in my late twenties with my own apartment, a circle of close friends who are basically family, and the ability to enjoy my own company.

I value my privacy and my space and have a strong antipathy towards roommates, so since I can afford to do so without too much stress, I choose to live alone. In summary, I'm the bloody target audience for this b So it's like this: I'm a member of one of the demographic groups Klinenberg focused on while writing Going Solo.

In summary, I'm the bloody target audience for this book. I want to clear up a thing or two before I go any further, as a couple other reviewers seem to be a bit confused. This is not a book about dating, it is not a book about people who are single in the relationship sense, and it is not a book about sex, promiscuity, or advocating the "breakdown" of marriage and intimate relationships. This is an unbiased study favoring neither the choice to be single or the choice to be in a long-term committed relationship.

Klinenberg indicates multiple times that Going Solo focuses on current culture, specifically people who live alone, and that includes both those in committed relationships and those who are single.

The distinction is important and one that should be kept in mind while reading. A friend in her mid-forties recommended Going Solo to me, and as someone living alone, the book had instant appeal. Once I picked up a copy, I was impressed.

Klinenberg starts out strong and keeps the momentum going for the first two-thirds of the book, and his presentation of solo living for those in their twenties through their fifties is solid, well-informed, and even makes it all sound downright exciting while admitting that it is also occasionally difficult. His argument that solo living actual promotes social interaction and civic involvement is convincing, even without my own experience having told me the same thing.

The material is organized loosely by age, youngest to oldest, so the first part resonated most with me. Descriptions of strong social connections, both physical and via technology, acknowledge the rise of networking sights, smart phones, and constant connection, and the suggestion that those going solo are more likely to have an extensive network of friends they rely on for companionship and support are spot on. Expanding my own circle came partly out of necessity: I live alone, and eight months ago had an unexpected and lingering health issue that left me mentally sound and even physically capable but, due to medical restrictions on driving and the occasional recurrence, I spent that time much more dependent on others than I ever wanted.

Despite this, I fought to maintain my autonomy by remaining alone in my apartment, and because of distance, I relied on friends more so than family. In one sense I was lucky, as those "friends" who were drama queens, were there because they wanted something, or were not truly invested quickly disappeared, and I was left with those I could depend on and who cared deeply enough to help. It's the "finding out who your true friends are and then replacing those who aren't" principle.

Go discuss it over beers, it's a fun time. Klinenberg serves up examples much like my own where it's the friends, not the family, who are helping the young soloists through times of trouble and providing all types of support while allowing the person going solo to consider the quality of relationships and surround herself with the most healthy companions.

These beginning chapters of Going Solo are an excellent overview of the culture change in the wealthier countries of the world, and as I read through the pages, I became more and more excited. The second third, while not quite as applicable to my age group, continued to offer a rousing picture of those who continue solo throughout their thirties and into middle age. I remained invested throughout this section, as it seemed like it was offering a view into a pleasant future should I choose to continue on my current path.

Whether or not I will is still up for debate and the book did nothing to change that. And then, unfortunately, there's the last part, which focuses on aging alone and the challenges faced by the elderly and isolated. Unnervingly, Klinenberg's message in the remaining few chapters seems to be, "We're all fucked. It seems the best we can hope for is terrible care in a nursing home that will kill us faster, thus putting us all out of our misery, and Klinenberg offers very little in the way of plausible alternatives.

He's clearly dropping the ball here, as the balanced perspective of earlier chapters is suddenly lost in favor of this bleak outlook. Needless to say, this part was more than a little depressing, acting as it did as a kick in the balls to the rest of the book, which had been truthful but quite encouraging up to that point.

I really could have done without that bit, so much so that I wish I hadn't read it and it strongly affected the rating I gave. Both the final chapter exploring how society needs to change to accommodate the rise in solo living and the book's conclusion read like an extremely boring term paper that goes on far too long for its own good.

Unless you're really, really into dry material, skip that part. No worries here if you chose to stop at the "Aging Alone" chapter, as you've already put the book back on the shelf and haven't missed out on a damn thing. A nitpick that another reviewer mentioned that was a pet peeve of my own: what the hell was up with the physical descriptions of each person he interviewed?

Lines like that stopped the narrative flow, threw off entire passages, and were completely unnecessary, not to mention they read like bad depictions from fan fiction written by eleven-year-olds. Very bad stylistic decision. Recommended overall, particularly if you're someone living solo whether by choice or not or if you're a cultural studies fan.

Not recommended for the bitter, the ultra-conservative, or those who use patronizing moral indignation to explain why they're still alone and unmarried ignoring, of course, the fact that they've grown bitter and are no longer particularly pleasant to be around. View all 4 comments. Jun 20, Emily rated it it was ok Shelves: magazine-article-as-book , I was looking forward to this book enough to buy it, but came away disappointed. To begin with, I did not find it "revelatory," beyond a few statistics early in the text about how prevalent living alone has become in American society, however little it may be reflected in the popular culture.

I expected a serious discussion of the policy implications of that fact, but huge swaths of this read like a self-help book, based on interviews usually introduced with text like "Kimberly lives in New York I was looking forward to this book enough to buy it, but came away disappointed.

I expected a serious discussion of the policy implications of that fact, but huge swaths of this read like a self-help book, based on interviews usually introduced with text like "Kimberly lives in New York City and works in the film industry; her shoulder-length brown hair frames a pale complexion and a sweet but somewhat sinister smile that conveys her confident and mischievous side.

I am a part of the demographic group that seems to enjoy living alone the most professional divorced women , but this book raises serious questions about whether living alone is good for other kinds of people, particularly seniors and men who are less good than women at building and maintaining social networks.

The author discusses how people in these groups suffer serious inconveniences and problems from living alone, yet still prefer it to living with family members like adult children.

This discussion is depressing and offer few solutions. Towards the end, the author begins to discuss new forms of housing that are designed for single people of various ages, which is interesting but doesn't really go anywhere. There are sort of two books here: an obvious and boring one about how rich young people find it fun to live alone in cities, and a terrifying one about frail old people who live alone and marriage is no help there, since your spouse may die before you.

A book with policy solutions regarding the second theme would be well worth reading. In the meantime, I'll be working on my application for Swedish citizenship. View all 7 comments. Mar 11, Andrea McDowell rated it really liked it Shelves: social-and-cultural.

When Klininberg investigated a wave of heat-related deaths in Chicago, he discovered the majority of them had some sad facts in common: most were men, living alone, without social networks or families to check in on them. One might expect, then, that his book on the exponential increase in single-person households would be dark and depressing.

Not a bit of it: while he doesn't shy away from the trend's darker potentials, like the above-mentioned isolated elderly men with no one to comfort them i When Klininberg investigated a wave of heat-related deaths in Chicago, he discovered the majority of them had some sad facts in common: most were men, living alone, without social networks or families to check in on them.

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Going Solo

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Going Solo by Eric Klinenberg - review

The trend is huge, says Eric Klinenberg, the N. Now that number is almost 50 percent. One in seven adults lives alone. Half of all Manhattan residences are one-person dwellings. No, I agree with God on that one. My point is that we need to make a distinction between living alone and being alone.

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