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on 21 May 2014
I bought the paperback edition and should warn you that the size of the font is very small. It must be size 8 or similar. I have not read the book yet (just got it yesterday), but please be warned that the small font may be very difficult to see for those with weak eyesight.
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on 8 January 2016
If you live in the USA it's probably fine, but for a Brit like me this book was so American as to be almost useless, the examples and language are American, most of it felt irrelevant and some of it was incomprehensible - for example 'Another popular forum is for singles to discuss discrimination in the real estate market. This is a particular problem in cities with a lot of cooperative apartments, because in these buildings prospective buyers have to be approved by private boards whose members may not believe that those living a "singles lifestyle" make appropriate neighbours....The agent steered her away from them... Exasperated, Sherri decided to switch brokers'. I was exasperated too. It reads like a postgrad thesis that the author has tried to make more accessible by using lots of examples, but for me these had the opposite effect. There are a few references to Europe and particularly Scandinavia but these amount to a few pages altogether. Although some of the points are more general, overall it was so foreign as to be unreadable and eventually I gave up.
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on 10 March 2013
A long overdue book tackling a much ignored subject well ! Food for thought ! Good at tracing the changes that have taken place over time
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on 14 December 2013
Excellent book.
Really liked the way Klinenberg writes from a neutral viewpoint and just examines the facts and suggests causal explanations without bias.
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on 28 June 2013
Makes you really think about society and housing in the Western World. American book but allot to learn here in Europe
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on 28 August 2012
Going Solo
The Extraordinary Rise and Surprising Appeal of Living Alone

By Eric Klinenberg

Who doesn't know someone who lives alone--who has for years and seems happy--is happy?

This new trend is setting an entirely new paradigm for how we live, where we live and the amenities this growing population demands. The statistics surrounding this relatively new phenomenon are staggering since for the first time in history, huge numbers of humans have started to settle down as what author Klinenberg refers to as Singletons. (Singleton is an author-created term that refers to those who live alone--no children, no romantic partner, no roommates.)

"Today, more than 50% of American adults are single--roughly one out of every seven adults--live alone."

Since living alone is so new to our society as a whole, we have no clear cut rationale to deal with it in a positive and supportive way. The old-fashioned premise, especially for women, that living alone is only a stage before landing that romantic partner is just that--old! Author Klinenberg is quick to point out that his entire study only deals with the culture of modern cities which allow for the expression of individual eccentricities and permit experiments with new ways of living.

The author's extensive research came to light and was later funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation after the publication of Heat Wave. This new social arrangement came into the public interest after the 1995 heat wave left hundreds of people in America's inner cities so isolated that they ultimately died alone. To understand how this could have happened, the best thing to do was go backwards to find the source.

"Today more that 5 million Americans under 35 have places of their own. Many of the young adults who live alone were brought up to do so. Not explicitly...they developed the capacity and desire to live independently through another, historically novel experience: growing up in a room of one's own."

Today, in many middle-class communities parents feel negligent if they don't provide a private bedroom for each of their children. This was once considered a luxury, but in recent times it's an entitlement of the middle-class and it usually begins around the age of eight. The rise of Latchkey Kids and private rooms within the home is an international experience.

And then there came this new trend that has literally changed everything--the digital age. In many cases, those living alone are socially overextended, and hyperactive use of digital media keeps them ever busier.

"Singles and people who live alone are twice as likely as married people to go to bars and dance clubs. They eat out in restaurants more often, are likely to take art or music classes, attend public events, and go shopping with friends."

Fast forward to Americans over 65, one in three--live alone--and the numbers living alone only increase with age and are primarily women. The book suggests we should no longer continue our journey through life solely supporting the concept of marriage being the end-all and that being single is something to abhor. Instead, we need to come to the realization that it's here to stay and that we need to create places for all to flourish.

Here-in lie the many faces of independence--isn't it time we celebrate all of them?
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on 25 January 2013
Found this book a good read and blew through it. Only thing that was missing from it was people living in solitude for the sake of solitude. No references of people living high in the mountains to be self sufficient to be off the grid or anything of that caliber. Maybe its just me and i interpreted the book wrong. This book has more to do about people who are single and live in city's who try to make something of life despite being stigmatized.

Nothing really about solitude, self sufficiency in the mountains, meditative endeavors or anything like it.
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on 16 April 2016
Very good book document.
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on 6 July 2015
Essential reading
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on 3 June 2012
What is a home? Public space? A happy marriage? A poor man? How can we relate to each other if we separate in each our home? Great answers to these questions and many others.
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