An ancient post that still gets comments from time to time, in many cases from non-academics, concerns the topic of whether a woman chooses to change (or hyphenate) her name when she gets married.
The most recent comment was from a smug and delusional person who seems to think that women who don't take their husband's last name are more likely to get divorced. Somehow I think the commenter was expressing their own insecurities rather than making a statement based on fact. Somehow I doubt that, after ~ 20 years in a marriage in which neither one of us at any time wanted me to change my name, the name issue is going to break up my marriage.
In this blog, I try to examine issues from various points of view, recognizing that we all have different experiences and priorities in our lives. But sometimes I make an unequivocal statement. This is one of those times:
Whether or not a woman changes her last name to her husband's has nothing to do with how much they love and respect one another. It has nothing to do with the strength of their bond. It is a personal decision that should be respected, no matter what that decision is.
I am now quite used to seeing the CVs of women who changed their names after first publishing under a different last name. In fact, this week I am spending a lot of time gazing at CVs for yet another committee that does this kind of thing, and have seen good examples of this. The change in name is easily and efficiently explained in a footnote to the CV. I completely don't care whether/why a woman changed her name. And I have no regrets about not changing my name. To each her own.
11 years ago