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Marriage, a History: How Love Conquered Marriage

Marriage, a History: How Love Conquered Marriage [Kindle Edition]

Stephanie Coontz
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)

Print List Price: £10.47
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Product Description

Product Description

Just when the clamor over "traditional" marriage couldn’t get any louder, along comes this groundbreaking book to ask, "What tradition?" In Marriage, a History, historian and marriage expert Stephanie Coontz takes readers from the marital intrigues of ancient Babylon to the torments of Victorian lovers to demonstrate how recent the idea of marrying for love is—and how absurd it would have seemed to most of our ancestors. It was when marriage moved into the emotional sphere in the nineteenth century, she argues, that it suffered as an institution just as it began to thrive as a personal relationship. This enlightening and hugely entertaining book brings intelligence, perspective, and wit to today’s marital debate.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 888 KB
  • Print Length: 452 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 014303667X
  • Publisher: Penguin Books; Reprint edition (28 Feb 2006)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B002I1XRZY
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #229,147 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
4.3 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars a lot better than you'd expect 7 Nov 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This is a book which shows how history was affected by the rules governing marriage and how the rules governing marriage were affected by history. It consists of a collection of history stories, quotations and opinions which shows the changing relationship between marriage and the social/economic structure of society. In other words, if you don't want the rules of marriage to change, don't change the economic structure of society. What is very clear from ploughing through all this information is the way the middle/upper classes use the law/church/media to brainwash/bully the working-classes as to how they should lead their lives. Marriage is a legal system of rules which govern inheritance. What is surprising about the book is that so much information was needed to prove that the modern view of marrying for love is a modern invention and has no historical basis. The problem with the book is that it makes its point about the `nuclear family' myth in the first chapter and them spends the rest of the book making the same point over and over again. What is noticeably missing from this book is the psychology of people. Can divorce be explained away simply by economic/job security; the book never nails this particularly well. What is not discussed is whether people are psychologically suite to lifelong marriage to one person; this is probably too controversial for academics to discuss. More and more people live alone and this book merely attributes this behaviour to the fact that humans are living longer and are now capable of surviving without a lifetime mate. Is this an adequate explanation? I think it's too simplistic; you read it and form your own conclusions.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Love it 19 Mar 2013
By Someone
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
this book makes you see how arbitrary marriage really is and how it changed in meaning over time and cultures.
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5.0 out of 5 stars fascinating 1 Nov 2013
By Hector
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
may itself be in the grip of it's own time and culture more than it wants, but nonetheless a deeply interesting attempt to look at how marriage dynamics and models have changed over time
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