More people are living alone than ever before — and the long building global trend is suddenly gaining more media coverage by the month. Maybe you’ve read that one in three Americans lives solo? In 2000, it was already one in four. The percentage of single-dwellers in the U.S. has doubled since 1960. In Sweden, 47 percent of households are single-occupant. In the following American cities more than 40 percent of households house a total of one: Washington, D.C., Atlanta, Denver, St. Louis, and Seattle. In Manhattan almost 50 percent of singletons are kicking it singly.
I suppose I hadn’t really thought much about the trend’s implications until I came across the NYTimes review of Eric Klinenberg’s new book Going Solo, in which Klinenberg an ethnographer discusses why more folks are choosing “solitude” and why we, as a society, should and should not be worried about it.