Huffington Post Launches Divorce Section: What's Good, What's Bad, What's Puzzling

HuffPoDivorce_post.jpg

Huffington Post Screenshot


The Huffington Post launched a new section this week to go along with its pages devoted to politics, business, and travel: a divorce site. Edited by famed author and screenwriter Nora Ephron, the site aims to be in the words of HuffPo founder Arianna Huffington, "a fast, fearless, highly interactive guide to the profound changes divorce brings." What's good, bad, and puzzling about this unprecedented new venture?

The Good:

Broken marriages are a fact of life for many Americans. The new site could help people navigate the fallout of a dissolved marriage. With articles on telling your kids you're going to get divorced and how to deal with people who judge you for being a divorcee, it looks like the site is on its way to fulfilling its goal.

The Bad:

Despite all the practical advice available on the page, the site's tone is gratingly flip. "Marriage comes and goes but divorce is forever –Nora Ephron," proclaims a banner on the top of the page—making the site sound more like a celebration of divorce than a guide to navigating a process that can be economically and emotionally devastating. One of the page's regular features, "Divorce Aphorism of the Day," only compounds the site's breezy attitude toward its subject—especially considering the inaugural aphorism, from New York Times television critic Alessandra Stanley: "His happiness is a small price to play for my freedom."

The Puzzling:

Ephron's role in the enterprise seems hard to figure out. Yes, as Huffington says, Ephron "knows a thing or two about the subject"—she had a high-profile divorce from Washington Post star reporter Carl Bernstein in the '70s, which she wrote about in her semi-autobiographical novel Heartburn. But Ephron's films paint a sunny, idealized view of marriage—When Harry Met Sally is punctuated by testimonials from contented elderly couples who have been married for decades, and Julie and Julia focuses on two enviably loving, functional marriages. Correspondingly, the movies take a dark view of divorce—think of Harry's deep post-divorce depression, or Tom Hank's pathetic, divorced-many-times-over father in You've Got Mail. A divorce website seems like a strange project for a writer who's made her name penning movies that celebrate marriage.

Presented by

Eleanor Barkhorn is a former senior editor at The Atlantic.

How to Cook Spaghetti Squash (and Why)

Cooking for yourself is one of the surest ways to eat well. Bestselling author Mark Bittman teaches James Hamblin the recipe that everyone is Googling.

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register.

blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

How to Cook Spaghetti Squash (and Why)

Cooking for yourself is one of the surest ways to eat well.

Video

Before Tinder, a Tree

Looking for your soulmate? Write a letter to the "Bridegroom's Oak" in Germany.

Video

The Health Benefits of Going Outside

People spend too much time indoors. One solution: ecotherapy.

Video

Where High Tech Meets the 1950s

Why did Green Bank, West Virginia, ban wireless signals? For science.

Video

Yes, Quidditch Is Real

How J.K. Rowling's magical sport spread from Hogwarts to college campuses

Video

Would You Live in a Treehouse?

A treehouse can be an ideal office space, vacation rental, and way of reconnecting with your youth.

More in Entertainment

Just In