American “Independence”

Jul 4 2011 @ 11:20am

by Zoë Pollock

Hanna Rosin charts its evolution:

In other countries, people value filial duty and sticking around the family home, but in America we value independence. You're supposed to — after you graduate from college — leave the house. You're supposed to pay your own rent. You're supposed to find a spouse and raise your own children. But lately that process has gotten blocked. The latest census shows that in the age group 25 to 34, 5.5 million Americans are living with their parents. And here's what's worse: the grandparents are moving in, too.

There is a new phenomenon in America called the multigenerational household. It now accounts for about 16 percent of American households, which is by far the highest it has been almost since the Great Depression, more like since the 1950s.