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When Gay People Get MarriedWhat Happens When Societies Legalize Same-Sex Marriage$
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M. V. Lee Badgett

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780814791141

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: March 2016

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9780814791141.001.0001

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Why Marry?

Why Marry?

The Value of Marriage

(p.15) 2 Why Marry?
When Gay People Get Married

M. V. Lee Badgett

NYU Press

This chapter examines why gay couples choose to marry and what we can learn from that process about the meaning of marriage. Drawing on interviews with same-sex couples from the Netherlands, it analyzes the actual personal choices made by couples with regards to marriage. It first considers the views of gay couples about the value of marriage, barriers to marriage, and the processes of accepting or avoiding those barriers. It then addresses questions such as whether gay couples think about marriage and marrying in the same way that heterosexual couples do, or whether same-sex couples really want and need to be able to marry. Finally, it discusses the relevance of the experiences of Dutch gay couples to the debate over same-sex marriage in the United States.

Keywords:   gay couples, marriage, same-sex couples, Netherlands, personal choice, heterosexual couples, same-sex marriage, United States

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