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Women’s Studies Oct 19th, 2016 Chapter 6- Marriage Definitions of Marriage--Marriage (from French marier)1. legal relationship between spouses2. Intimate union3. Union of two things4. In cards, declaration of king and queen of the same suitMarriage as a Conceptual Category -Marriage implies a ‘bringing together-This ‘bringing together’ is usually of ‘opposites’ objects or people -E.g. William Blake’s poem: The Marriage of Heaven and Hell-Predominantly, however, it is the bringing together of ‘man’ and ‘woman’Complementarity and Difference-Conceptually, marriage is based on the ideas of COMPLEMENTARITY and DIFFERENCE-COMPLEMENTARITY: the relation of parts (to form a whole)-DIFFERENCE: state of being unlike others-Philosophically, the idea of MARRIAGE is to bring together that which is differentyet complementaryin order to form a wholeBinary Relations-MARRIAGE = IDEAL concept-MARRIAGE = BINARY concept (OPPOSITION between two things)-BINARY RELATIONS = ASYMMETRY-One side of the binary always has MORE VALUE than the other-Presence/absence, Day/night, Self/other, Sun/moon, Man/woman-Not necessarily symmetrical-What does this mean for marriage? Men and women when they marry, are they equal? (in terms of marriage) Historically marriage has never been equal Marriage and the Law-17th-18thcentury Europe: parents control offspring’s choices-No individual choice involved with marriage during this time -19th-century to early 20th-century United States: miscegenation laws prohibited African-Americans from marrying white Americans-Who got to marry who in terms of race-Before 2005 in Canada: same-sex marriage prohibited-At each point marriage is saying yes or no to something, it is controlling the way we live and conduct our lives -What do these different laws tell us about marriage?
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Group Counseling: Strategies and Skills
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Women’s Studies Oct 19th, 2016 Marriage and Gender-How does Marriage affect Gender?-Gender roles get re-established in marriage -Husband and wife complement one another through their GENDERED DIFFERENCES, two parts forming a whole, an ideal husband and an ideal wife must not be the same to create this whole-Historically, husband and wife occupy different, opposing gendered roles within marriage-Symbolism of Wedding Day-Marriage has always been a way of controlling both sex and gender -Historically has ensured the subordination of wives and husbands Images of marriage-There is a very custom and traditional part of marriage -White= purity, chastity, purity-Up to 1800s:FEME SOLE (fr. Femme seule) = unmarriedFEME COVERT (fr. Femme couverte) = marriedStatus of ‘feme covert’ or married woman-FEME COVERT: property before marriage and anything earned during marriage belong to husband-FEME COVERT: not a legal subject in her own right, exists legally only through her husband-FEME COVERT: no legal rights over her childrenWilliam Blackstone, ‘Commentaries on the Laws of England’ (1753)“By marriage, the husband and wife are one person in law: that is, the very being,or legal existence of the woman is suspended during the marriage, or at least

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