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As Long as We Both Shall LoveThe White Wedding in Postwar America$
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Karen M. Dunak

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780814737811

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: March 2016

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9780814737811.001.0001

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(p.1) Introduction
As Long as We Both Shall Love

Karen M. Dunak

NYU Press

This book explores the evolution of the white wedding in the years since World War II and the possibilities it offered its celebrants. Criticized as outdated, rehearsed, and seemingly incapable of distinction or true personal meaning, the American wedding emerged as a single, recognizable celebration style. Postwar brides and grooms followed a national wedding model that reflected their commitment to modern visions of married life and civic belonging. This book considers the personal motivations of the celebrants who have contributed to the wedding's continued cultural power. It also examines how weddings became a medium for same-sex couples not only as public celebrations of private life but also as political demonstrations in their battle for marriage equality and for equal rights of citizenship and national belonging more generally.

Keywords:   white wedding, American wedding, brides, grooms, married life, civic belonging, same-sex couples, marriage equality, equal rights, citizenship

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