"This is a carefully researched and skillfully written book which makes important contributions to the literatures on legal consciousness, law and emotion, and same-sex marriage. Richman gives us one of the first detailed descriptions of the experiences and views of same-sex couples who entered legal marriages in the U.S., and her account is both highly readable and intellectually sophisticated."
—Kathleen E. Hull, author of Same-Sex Marriage: The Cultural Politics of Love and Law
"Richman's interviews and analysis highlight the multi-layered meanings of marriage—romantic, political, practical, and symbolic—to the gay and lesbian couples who first succeeded (or failed) to secure legal recognition for their unions. An illuminating and moving study."
—Stephanie Coontz, author of A Strange Stirring: The Feminine Mystique and American Women at the Dawn of the 1960s
"License to Wed is a wonderfully rich, deep, and surprising book that will change your understanding of why gay couples have fought so hard to marry. Others have explored the legal and political battles behind these struggles, but Richman pushes us to deeper ground, where the personal and political meanings of marriage intersect and diverge in unexpected ways. This is a masterful and original work that will require both conservatives and progressives to evaluate the marriage equality movement in new ways."
—Shannon Minter, National Center for Lesbian Rights
"This book addresses a timely and still evolving issue with directness and sensitivity while rigorously examining the legal basis for same-sex marriage."
—, Library Journal
"Richman fully grasps how marriage plays out differently for same-sex couples. She commences her book with an erudite history of the gay-marriage movement, capturing the community politics of assimilation and marginalization, as well as the larger societal debates, that provide the context for her subjects' motivations . . . . Her book provides essential insights about marriage that every family lawyer working with same-sex couples needs to understand to fully grasp their clients' situation and provide them effective representation."
—Frederick Hertz, California Lawyer
"In License to Wed: What Legal Marriage Means to Same-Sex Couples, Richman takes on the legal ramifications of marriage for same-sex and queer identifying couples in Massachusetts and California. In 2004, the Supreme Court found that same-sex couples had the right to marry. After the glow of equality wore off, lawyers and couples in California and Massachusetts were left with questions about how far their rights extended. This book looks to answer those questions."
—Kitty Drexel, Edge
"Richman’s study is thorough and written in an unaffected, judicious style. Her analysis demonstrates that same-sex couples who are able to marry legally often find transcendent meaning in the experience. Given that most states prohibit same-sex couples from being legally married, License to Wed adds compelling personal reasons to the legal arguments for the validity of the struggle for marriage equality.”
—, The Gay and Lesbian Review
“The book is well organized and written in an engaging, non-technical manner, making it accessible to both academic audiences and well-educated general readers. A genuinely good read, Richman’s timely contribution to the understanding of same-sex marriage (and marriage more generally) will appeal especially to students of legal studies, political science, and sociology.”
“Richman offers valuable insight into the relationship between the legal, the personal, and the societal. Richman contributes to the same-sex marriage literature by offering further examples of some themes already prevalent in the literature, while offering new explications of couples’ experiences as well."
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