Penguins and Polyamory: Using Law and Film to Explore the Essence of Marriage in Canadian Family Law
Gillian Calder, “Penguins and Polyamory: Using Law and Film to Explore the Essence of Marriage in Canadian Family Law” (2009) 21(1) Canadian Journal of Women and the Law 55-89.
36 Pages Posted: 23 Aug 2014
Date Written: August 22, 2014
With attention to the way in which legal understandings of the family are perpetuated through popular culture, this article engages with recent debates in Canada both on the legalization of same-sex marriage and the criminalization of polygamy. By examining the popularity of the Academy Award-winning documentary March of the Penguins, the article interrogates how images of family and marriage in this documentary film have been appropriated by opposing advocates. This article explores how these challenges to a “traditional” notion of “the family” in Canada have cemented, in the process, a more rigid boundary around a monogamous, conjugal understanding of the family form. The author unearths what remains central to the protection of marriage as a core value in the Canadian context.
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