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Cohabitation, Marriage and the Law : Social Change and Legal Reform in the 21st Century - and Alison Park

Cohabitation, Marriage and the Law

Social Change and Legal Reform in the 21st Century


Published: 23rd June 2005
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Unmarried opposite-sex cohabitation ('cohabitation') is rapidly increasing in Britain and is expected to double from its 1996 level by 2021. A quarter of children are now born to unmarried cohabiting parents. This is not just an important change in the way we live in modern Britain; for cohabitation has also become a political and theoretical marker. Some commentators see it as evidence of the rise of selfish individualism and the breakdown of the family, others - probably in an equally extreme way - see cohabitation as the best partnering form for 'post-modern intimacy' and the 'pure relationship'. Politically, 'stable' families are seen as crucial, especially by a British government which sees social morality as vital for a sustainable society. But how far can and should governments intervene and regulate? At the same time, and partly reflecting this, the law still retains important distinctions in the way it treats cohabiting and married families. Should the law be changed to reflect a changing social reality, or should it - can it - be used to direct these changes? Using findiings from their recent Nuffield Foundation funded study, combining a nationally representative analysis of cohabitation and marriage with in-depth qualitative data about what cohabitants do and believe, the book explores public attitudes to cohabitation and marriage and the 'common law marriage myth' (the false belief that cohabitants have the same or similar legal rights as married couples). It also provides an analysis of who cohabits, who marries and why and investigates legal attitudes and beliefs about 'cohabitation and common law marriage' and concludes by considering attitudes to and options for legal reform in the light of the research findings.

The structure of the book is businesslike and logical...At the very least, one certainly hopes that such as Melanie Phillips, Anne Atkins and Ann Widdecombe will read Cohabitation, Marriage and the Law before next announcing that only married couples merit recognition and protection under our law. Professor Chris Barton Child and Family Law Quarterly Volume 18, No.1, 2006 ...offers a helpful and clarifying look at the realities of cohabitation, marriage and the law in Britain today. John A. Dick INTAMS Journal for the Study of Marriage & Spirituality Vol 13/1, Spring 2007

Reorganization and Resistance
The Professional as Political
English Lawyers from the 1989 Green Papers through the Access to Justice Act 1999
Fighting for Monopoly
Unification, Differentiation and Representation of the French Bar
The Netherlands
Judges and Lawyers in the Netherlands-An Overview from 1970 till 2000
Regulated Deregulation
The Case of the German Legal Profession
The Australian Legal Profession
Towards a National Identity
A Legal Profession in Transformation
the Korean Experience
Latin America
Lawyers in Late 20th Century Latin America
Legal Professionals Aplenty, But No Legal Profession?
Law and Lawyers in Contemporary Mexico
Social Mobility and Hierarchical Structure in Canadian Law Practice
United States
From Professional Dominance to Organizational Dominance
Professionalism, Inequality, and Social Change among Chicago Lawyers, 1975-1995
Table of Contents provided by Publisher. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9781841134338
ISBN-10: 1841134333
Series: Contemporary Family Trends
Audience: BAC
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 170
Published: 23rd June 2005
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 23.5 x 15.88  x 1.27
Weight (kg): 0.28
Edition Number: 1