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Columbia Law School

Law and Gender

2011

California Law Review

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Regulatory Fictions: On Marriage And Countermarriage, Elizabeth F. Emens Jan 2011

Regulatory Fictions: On Marriage And Countermarriage, Elizabeth F. Emens

Faculty Scholarship

Debates about marriage currently capture much public attention. Scholars have pushed beyond the question of whether gays are worthy of marriage to ask whether marriage is worthy of gays. The present moment of questioning marriage in its current form may be brief Thus, we should take this opportunity to imagine the widest possible range of alternatives to our current marriage regime – what I call countermarriage regimes. This Essay draws on two unlikely sources of legal innovation to expand our thinking about marriage alternatives: literature and anti-gay law. Literature offers an array of countermarriage regimes, including exploding marriage, three-strikes marriage, line ...