Short Course Description
Is marriage simply a romantic and intimate bond between two consenting adults? This course explores the institution of marriage as a site through which society institutes and maintains a certain social order, allocates and regulates the distribution of property, rights and privileges, defines citizenship, draws racial lines, prescribes gender roles, and points at boundaries of normalcy. We will read novels and short stories first published at the turn of the twentieth century in the context of changing marital laws and conventions, examine various marriage plots, and become acquainted with social phenomena such as the man-woman, the shadow-wife, the Boston marriage, and with a variety of marriages, including polygamy, an open marriage, and same-sex relations. Readings will include works written be Kate Chopin, Charlotte Perkins Gilman, Henry James, Zora Neale Hurston, Pauline Johnson, Mourning Dove, John Oskison and others.
Full syllabus will be available to registered students only