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Same-Sex Marriage in the Americas: Policy Innovation for Same-Sex Relationships Paperback – April 13, 2010


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With same-sex marriage becoming the litmus test social issue of our era, this book offers a new vantage point on the impetus and obstacles to legalization. Essays from Canada to Argentina offer new insights into how same-sex marriage comes about or comes to a halt. (Barry Adam, University of Windsor)

This volume addresses two major gaps in the burgeoning scholarship on marriage equality. First, it utilizes a comparative lens to consider the circumstances under which nations are more or less likely to formally recognize same-sex relationships. Second, it broadens the field of inquiry to include an examination of the dynamic changes occurring in Central and South America in addition to its exploration of Canada and the United States. The material is rich and speaks to a wide range of issues, including the role of institutional structures, local political cultures, international norms, and strategic actors in producing sociolegal change. A valuable addition to existing studies. (Ellen Ann Andersen, University of Vermont)

This is a timely and important volume that represents a pioneering expansion of LGBT-oriented work. This volume is not only at the frontier of LGBT political science, but also represents a sophisticated development in the comparative field generally. Each chapter is well done, compelling, and brings new insight to the host of issues and problems presented. (Charles Anthony "Tony" Smith, University of California, Irvine)

This book edited by Pierceson (Univ. of Illinois), Piatti-Crocker (Univ. of Illinois), and Schulenberg (PhD candidate, Univ. of California, Riverside) could serve well in a comparative politics, sociology, or gender studies course. It includes contributions on the status of same-sex relationships in the US, Mexico, Central and South America, and the Caribbean. The chapters on Argentina, Mexico, and Brazil are insightful and detail the unique features of those countries' political systems. The chapter titled 'Deconstructing the Backlash' assesses the argument that the states in the US where the pro-gay-marriage-rights policies have been spearheaded by state supreme court decisions will face a backlash from the general population, which will culminate in a state constitutional amendment to reverse the court's decision. Each chapter gives an extensive review of the literature and a comprehensive synthesis of the issues in the country under investigation. Undergraduates as well as graduate students and many members of the general public will be interested in this well-written survey of where various countries in the Americas currently stand on gay marriages. Summing Up: Recommended. (CHOICE)

About the Author

Jason Pierceson is an associate professor of Political Science and Legal Studies, and Chair of the Political Science Department at University of Illinois. Adriana Piatti-Crocker is an assistant professor at University of Illinois. Shawn Schulenberg is a Ph.D. candidate at University of California Riverside.
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