Man and Wife in America: A History

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Harvard University Press, 2009 - 416 страници
In nineteenth-century America, the law insisted that marriage was a permanent relationship defined by the husband's authority and the wife's dependence. Yet at the same time the law created the means to escape that relationship. How was this possible? And how did wives and husbands experience marriage within that legal regime? These are the complexities that Hendrik Hartog plumbs in a study of the powers of law and its limits. Exploring a century and a half of marriage through stories of struggle and conflict mined from case records, Hartog shatters the myth of a golden age of stable marriage. He describes the myriad ways the law shaped and defined marital relations and spousal identities, and how individuals manipulated and reshaped the rules of the American states to fit their needs. We witness a compelling cast of characters: wives who attempted to leave abusive husbands, women who manipulated their marital status for personal advantage, accidental and intentional bigamists, men who killed their wives' lovers, couples who insisted on divorce in a legal culture that denied them that right. As we watch and listen to these men and women, enmeshed in law and escaping from marriages, we catch reflected images both of ourselves and our parents, of our desires and our anxieties about marriage. Hartog shows how our own conflicts and confusions about marital roles and identities are rooted in the history of marriage and the legal struggles that defined and transformed it.
 

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MAN AND WIFE IN AMERICA: A History

Потребителски отзив  - Kirkus

An illuminating look at how law and custom shaped marriage in the 19th century and how those practices echo into the 21st. Contrary to conventional wisdom, marriage in the 1800s was neither as stable ... Прочетете пълната рецензия

Man and wife in America: a history

Потребителски отзив  - Not Available - Book Verdict

When spouses went to court in 19th-century America, the courts were not, as some would have it, instruments of a hegemonic "covert political theory." Instead, according to Princeton's Hartog, judges ... Прочетете пълната рецензия

Съдържание

The Scene of a Marriage
6
Abigail Baileys Divorce
40
Early Exits
63
Being a Wife
93
Acting Like a Husband
136
Coercion and Harriet Douglas Cruger
167
John Barry and American Fatherhood
193
The Right to Kill
218
The Geography of Remarriage
242
Coverture in a New Age
287
Epilogue
309
A Note on Method
315
Notes
317
Index
395
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Информация за автора (2009)

Hendrik Hartog is Class of 1921 Bicentennial Professor in the History of American Law and Liberty at Princeton University.

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