Date of Award

5-2007

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

Legacy Department

History

Advisor

Shockley, Megan

Abstract

This thesis explores woman-centered critiques of marriage during the period of second-wave feminism from 1963 to 1982. It explores the social and cultural, economic, sexual, and legal critiques of marriage that feminists posed and the messages about marriage that filtered down into a collection of popular magazines geared specifically to a female audience. It argues that feminists, operating through intersecting and diverging motives, interests, and agendas, posed numerous and wide-ranging critiques of marriage as a personal relationship and politicized institution. It asserts that while popular women's magazines were affected by the claims of feminists, these magazines generally remained conservative in the content, form, and language of the articles on marriage that they featured. This thesis provides a much needed treatment of a topic important to many feminists and an issue central to understanding women's status in American society.

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