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SmartMarriages: Devoted to Saving Couples

Part three of the Day to Day series on marriage education profiles a traveling conference called SmartMarriages. A diverse collection of people have devoted their careers to teaching people how to have a successful marriage.

Conference attendees, however, must wade through booths where marriage advocates have very different ideologies and approaches. Some see marriage and divorce as a public health issue, but others emphasize religion -- primarily Christianity -- as the key to a healthy, successful union.

Still, liberals and conservatives alike agree on one thing: marriage is more than a simple piece of paper, it's an institution that needs to be preserved.

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Alix Spiegel has worked on NPR's Science Desk for 10 years covering psychology and human behavior, and has reported on everything from what it's like to kill another person, to the psychology behind our use of function words like "and", "I", and "so." She began her career in 1995 as one of the founding producers of the public radio program This American Life. While there, Spiegel produced her first psychology story, which ultimately led to her focus on human behavior. It was a piece called 81 Words, and it examined the history behind the removal of homosexuality from the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders.
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