Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Bartlett on Mayeri, "Marital Supremacy and the Constitution of the Nonmarital Family"

Over at JOTWELL, Katharine Bartlett (Duke University) has posted an admiring review of Serena Mayeri's recent article, "Marital Supremacy and the Constitution of the Nonmarital Family," published in Volume 103 of the California Law Review (2015). Here's the first paragraph:
A concern about the marriage equality movement is that it has reinforced the supremacy of marriage and detracted from the LGBT community’s broader agenda of family pluralism.1 In her stunning new work, Serena Mayeri describes a similar dynamic in the history of another civil rights movement—the movement to eliminate illegitimacy classifications. There, too, important civil rights were secured at the cost of achieving broader, more comprehensive legal reform on behalf of non-conforming families. The parallelism of these two movements is not random or fortuitous. Indeed, Mayeri’s work shows that the movements contributed to the same legacy of marital supremacy and that the loser in these two movements was the same: women, especially poor women and women of color, whose circumstances and desires put them outside the mainstream of traditional marriage.
Read on here.