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Defending the nuclear family and extolling 'family values' have long been central features of politics in capitalist societies, in spite of radical left challenges from social, counter-cultural and gay rights movements. This book examines these challenges as they emerged in the 1960s and 1970s, re-appraising their relevance in the light of recent developments, including the spread of more diverse family forms and the rise of the same-sex marriage movement. Drawing on archival research in the US, UK and Australia, the author asks what the emergence of same-sex marriage movements and legislation mean for challenges to the nuclear family in the light of an original general hostility to marriage and family structures in the gay liberation movement, whilst considering the extent to which the nuclear family might be included in the list of social and economic institutions subject to criticism on the part of more recent anti-capitalist movements, such as Occupy. A detailed study of the extent to which the nuclear family remains susceptible to the radical critiques of the last century, Radical Challenges to the Family examines whether the original challenges shed light on ensuring social problems, including domestic violence, child abuse, homophobia, and growing marital dissatisfaction. As such, it will appeal to scholars of sociology and politics with interests in gender and sexuality, the sociology of the family and feminist thought.
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