San Diego Law Review


Allan Carlson

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The real debate is over the nature of marriage, and of society. The first model noted in this Article emphasizes variability and change. The second model sees marriage as an institution, universal in its basics. For consistent ideological reasons, Sweden's socialists openly embraced the first model, because conventional marriage stood in the way of their collectivist ambitions. Marriage embodied a rival set of loyalties that prevented emergence of the desired androgynous individual dependent on the central state and forestalled the socialization of private life. Until recently, American debate over the meaning of marriage has been much more muddle than the one in Sweden. One positive result of the current U.S. controversy over same-sex marriage has been to clear the air, to reveal the real issues involved, and to clarify the predictable consequences of decisions soon to be made.

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