A 10-minute video that tries to explain the mysteries of attraction in terms of economic supply and demand has been recently released by a Texas research institute.
'The Economics of Sex' video is the first of several that will connect "compelling data with everyday life," academic Mark Regnerus and his colleagues at the Austin Institute for the Study of Family and Culture said.
The video, released on Valentine's Day, uses a series of time-lapse whiteboard drawings and classic economic analysis to explore why young-adult marriage rates in the United States are dropping while dating-service industry figures have exploded, the Washington Times reported.
The answer, the video's creators suggest, is partly because of the unintended consequences of reproductive technology, i.e., the birth control pill.
Before the 1960s, "sex before marriage took place during the search for a mate - someone to marry. Sex was oriented toward marriage," the video said.
But with the arrival of affordable, reliable contraception, the link between sex and marriage has been all but shattered.
This led to a split in the "mating market," according to the Austin researchers.
The "sex market" is filled with a lot of men who compete for the attention of the relatively fewer women in that market, while the "marriage market" is filled with an oversupply of wannabe brides who vie for the relatively fewer number of wannabe grooms.
The results: lower marriage rates for young adults, older average ages for marrying couples and the rise of a 1-billion-dollar dating industry aimed at helping people find partners who are shopping in the same "market."