Marriage and Domestic Partnership: Rationality and Inequality
Charles R. P. Pouncy
Florida International University College of Law
Spring , 1998
Temple Political & Civil Rights Law Review, Vol. 7, No. 2, 1998
Florida International University Legal Studies Research Paper No. 08-22
The efforts of gay and lesbian communities to regularize their relations resulted in competing claims for same-sex marriage and domestic partnerships. This essay argues that the debate between these two forms of organization is tainted by a reliance on analyses provided by neoclassical economic theory. If the decision about which of these institutions presents the best way to structure the relationships of lesbians and gays is dominated by the notion of economic rationality then marriage seems clearly preferable. However, when the focus is changed from the economic interests of the individual to the health and well being of queer communities domestic partnership emerges as the preferable way of organizing gay and lesbian relationships. Thus, the paper argues that queer communities should invest their resources in the development of domestic partnership as a societal institution. Adopting marriage is more likely to support the male privilege and heterosexism inherent in marriage, and will erode the processes of queer culture.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 17
Keywords: gay, lesbian, same-sex marriage, domestic partnership, economics, queer communityAccepted Paper Series
Date posted: November 10, 2009
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