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Pamela Haag
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Pamela Haag is the author of Marriage Confidential, a provocative look inside post-millenial marriage. She is a weekly columnist on "Marriage 3.0" at the Big Think magazine, where you can get a glimpse of what goes on in the post-wedding world. See www.marriageconfidential.com for media, interviews, clips and reviews. See Pamela Haag's personal website for other writings and information.

Haag's work spans a wide, and unusual, spectrum, all the way from academic scholarship to memoir. Thematically, it has consistently focused on women's issues, feminism, and American culture, but she’s also written on topics as eclectic as the effort to rebuild the lower Manhattan subway lines after 9/11, 24-hour sports radio talk shows, and the experience of class mobility.

Haag earned a Ph.D. in history from Yale University in 1995, after graduating with Highest Honors from Swarthmore College. She’s held fellowships from the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Mellon Foundation, and post-doctoral fellowships at both Brown and Rutgers University. As an academic she published scholarly articles and a first book, based on dissertation work, with Cornell University Press in 1999.

She became the Director of Research for the AAUW Educational Foundation, a national nonprofit based in Washington, DC, that advocates for girls and women. In that capacity she wrote and edited several pieces of research and was the media spokesperson for the research.

In 2002, Haag became a speechwriter on issues of public transit and transit-oriented development for the secretary of the Federal Transit Administration and, occasionally, the Secretary of Transportation.

Since 2004, she has been publishing personal and opinion essays in a variety of venues, including National Public Radio, the American Scholar, the Christian Science Monitor, Ms. magazine, The Washington Post, the Chronicle of Higher Education, the Michigan Quarterly Review, New Haven Review, the Antioch Review, the New York Post, and carte blanche. Haag earned an MFA in creative nonfiction from Goucher College in 2008, where she won the Chris White award for best essay, and was also a prizewinner in The Atlantic’s 2008 national nonfiction contest.

“Marriage Confidential (HarperCollins; May 31, 2011; $25.99) draws on all of these strands of Haag’s unique professional biography to create almost a new genre, a weave of academic expertise, cultural history, creative non-fiction, memoir, storytelling, interviews, and commentary.

Blog Entries by Pamela Haag

Valentine's Day: Its Gory, Unromantic Secret History

(4) Comments | Posted February 12, 2013 | 2:57 PM

The origin of Valentine's Day has nothing to do with love and everything to do with "torturous martyrdom." On second thought, perhaps the origin of Valentine's Day has a great deal to do with love*

Originally, the feast day of St. Valentine honored two third century martyrs by the name...

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The Athlete Mixed Marriage

(5) Comments | Posted September 18, 2012 | 12:27 PM

"What are you thinking?" is a booby-trapped marriage question. I know this, but I can't always resist its shiny lure.

My husband John and I were on a long car ride not long ago. Our son was taking his first solo airplane trip to visit my sister, and we...

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Let Them Eat Opera: Pennsylvania Governor Corbett Gets Honored for Supporting the Arts While Slashing the Arts

(5) Comments | Posted May 10, 2012 | 3:59 PM

What do you get for being a governor who cuts $860 million from his state's education budget and forces schools to slash their arts education? A Lifetime Achievement Award for support of the arts from the Pittsburgh Opera.

That's what's happening this Saturday to Pennsylvania governor...

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That Spa Black Magic and the Joy of Cooking: Are You Being Pampered or Basted?

(2) Comments | Posted May 1, 2012 | 2:41 PM

"Plan now. Relax soon."

The concierge of a fancy resort has sent me this "Quick! Relax, Goddamnit!" email. My husband and I are looking forward to attending a wedding at the resort next month.

The concierge urges me to make "pre-arrival" relaxation arrangements, which isn't...

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Birth Control Isn't Really About "Women's Health." It's About...

(13) Comments | Posted March 2, 2012 | 12:48 PM

This is a polemic: Access to birth control isn't really about my "health." It's not principally about the management of ovarian cysts or the regulation of periods.

Birth control isn't about my health unless by health you mean my capacity to get it on, to have a happy, joyous...

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In Priase of My Dumb-as-Dirt, Stupid Phone

(0) Comments | Posted February 5, 2012 | 11:03 AM

My cell phone is an idiot. It's a straight-up, dingbat dumb-ass. It can't do anything, except make phone calls, and has no competency to tell me where I am, why I am there, how I got there, or what I should do, think, feel, and see now that I'm there.

...
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The Neighbor Break-Up

(0) Comments | Posted November 21, 2011 | 3:57 PM

I just learned that our neighbors are moving, to another state. My heart broke a little when I heard this. They're moving so that the mom can take a better job, with a saner boss. It's an important goal.

Over the last decade we've been close, as far as neighbors...

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Steve Jobs: The Capitalist-as-Romantic

(0) Comments | Posted November 3, 2011 | 5:50 PM

The New York Times reports today on the growing backlash against Apple founder Steve Jobs and his post-mortem apotheosis.

It was bound to happen. We like to create and then eviscerate our idols.

I was never a passionate devotee of Jobs or Apple, nor...

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What a Wedding Merchants' Convention Taught Me About Marriage

(10) Comments | Posted October 12, 2011 | 3:21 AM

"There are just THREE things you need for a wedding," my 86-year-old father intoned years ago: "Peanuts, punch and a gown." I never forgot the advice, although I never followed it, either.

When I was working on my book Marriage Confidential, I wanted to get a feel for...

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Remember When Liberals Were Feminists?

(224) Comments | Posted September 18, 2011 | 3:46 PM

Ron Suskind's brand new book, Confidence Men, portrays the Obama administration as an old boys club in liberal garb.

I've been waiting for this sort of book, and narrative, to emerge, because it describes within the administration a growing estrangement between liberalism and feminism that I've sensed...

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The Bullshit Paradox

(0) Comments | Posted July 20, 2011 | 5:01 PM

With apologies to my parents, I'm going to spell out "bullshit" in this essay because bullshit is the serious object of my inquiry, and isn't being used as a curse. Quite the opposite.

My claims are that bullshit gets a bum rap, and, paradoxically, that it's...

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Does The Celebrity Breakup Have Anything To Do With Our Own Marriages?

(1) Comments | Posted May 25, 2011 | 1:37 PM

It's hard to normalize the celebrity marriage and divorce for the rest of us. After all, we're highly unlikely to end up married to an immigrant ex-bodybuilder, mega-Hollywood action star turned Governor who impregnates a member of our full-time housekeeping staff.

These divorces should be consigned to the marriage...

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In a Google World, Do You Have the 'Right to Be Forgotten'?

(0) Comments | Posted May 23, 2011 | 7:30 PM

I have a few self-declared Google-stalker friends. It's a common pastime of the clickerati. They pursue details about their friends' lives and work through habitual online searching.

For myself, though, I make it a point not to Google friends, colleagues or acquaintances, even though I've occasionally broken this rule....

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The Modern Family: Mired in Red-Tape Conversation

(14) Comments | Posted April 11, 2011 | 2:53 PM

How much actual conversation is there in family conversation? I'd like to see this depicted on a pie chart, because after years of observing family conversation, it seems that a depressingly large percentage of domestic talk today is devoted to procedural, logistical banalities, and less to qualitatively richer themes, by...

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Who Ever Said That Feminism Was About Your Happiness?

(27) Comments | Posted March 10, 2011 | 3:26 AM

March is Women's History Month. This is of most urgent interest, I'd guess, to middle school essayists, public television, and designers of educational posters.

However, thinking of the occasion did inspire me to browse my collection of yellowed "second-wave" feminist paperbacks, from the late 1960s and early 1970s. I...

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Are We In the Post-Romantic Age?

(148) Comments | Posted February 9, 2011 | 8:45 AM

Romance fades. Everyone knows this.

The first flush of true love in marriage mellows into something less combustible. Some spouses mourn that loss quietly; some divorce when it happens; others welcome it.

I've got something else in mind, however, when I propose that we're entering a post-romantic age....

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