Pub. date: 2008 | Online Pub. Date: May 28, 2008 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412963930 | Print ISBN: 9781412941655 | Online ISBN: 9781412963930| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Same-sex marriage challenges the definition of marriage. Conservatives oppose it on moral grounds, claiming it threatens the structure of the Western institution of heterosexual marriage. Others identify the social problem as the institution of marriage itself. Supporters of same-sex marriage identify the social problem as heterosexual hegemony and discrimination against gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender people. Although the institution of marriage versus same-sex unions has been critiqued for centuries, in the late 20th century criticisms began with the feminist and gay/lesbian rights movement and the sexual revolution of the late 1960s. Non-procreative sex and sex outside of marriage, particularly for women, redefined monogamous marriage. Radical feminists viewed marriage as an oppressive institution of patriarchy. The heterosexual monogamous lifestyle was challenged by the strengthening of alternative living arrangements. The focus moved to creating equal rights for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transsexual and transgender, and later inter-sexed, queer, and questioning people (LGBTIQQ). In ...