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Monnat Research on Mortality Trends Featured in New York Times Article

October 6, 2022

The New York Times

Shannon Monnat

Shannon Monnat


The Republican Party has become crucially dependent on a segment of white voters suffering what analysts call a “mortality penalty.”

This penalty encompasses not only disproportionately high levels of so-called deaths of despair—suicide, drug overdoses and alcohol abuse—but also across-the-board increases in several categories of disease, injury and emotional disorder.

In her 2020 paper, “Trends in U.S. Working-Age Non-Hispanic White Mortality: Rural-Urban and Within-Rural Differences,” Shannon Monnat, professor of sociology, explained that “between 1990-92 and 2016-18, the mortality rates among non-Hispanic whites increased by 9.6 deaths per 100,000 population among metro males and 30.5 among metro females but increased by 70.1 and 65.0 among nonmetro (rural and exurban) males and females, respectively.” 

Monnat described these differences as a “nonmetro mortality penalty.” 

Read more about Monnat's research and her interview comments in the New York Times article, “‘There Are Two Americas Now: One With a B.A. and One Without’.”


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