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Legalizing LGBT FamiliesHow the Law Shapes Parenthood$
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Amanda K. Baumle and D'Lane R. Compton

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9781479857647

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: September 2016

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9781479857647.001.0001

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Parenting against the Law

Parenting against the Law

(p.189) 6 Parenting against the Law
Legalizing LGBT Families

Amanda K. Baumle

D’Lane R. Compton

NYU Press

In this chapter, the authors examine the ways in which participants resist the law, eschewing its moral authority and enacting everyday resistance. Few participants engaged in collective action or overt legal challenges, despite their expression of resentment toward formal law or administrative procedures. Nonetheless, through acts of everyday resistance to law, such as masquerading as single or heterosexual, or modifying legal documents, participants reflected the manner in which they rejected legal authority over their parenting. These acts were particularly important for those residing in legally neutral or legally negative states, where participants were embedded in a negative sociolegal climate that produced greater hostility and defiance. This defiance, however, was tempered by the desire to achieve their family goals and to protect their children from retaliation, resulting in few overt legal challenges. Participants who expressed this understanding of the law indicated not only their rejection of the moral authority of the law, but an oftentimes gleeful resistance to power structures operating within their respective states.

Keywords:   resistance to law, masquerading as single, modifying legal documents

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