Close menu


Sunderland Repository records the research produced by the University of Sunderland including practice-based research and theses.

Tackling Inequality in the Intimate Sphere: Problematizing Love and Violence in Same-Sex Relationships

Donovan, Catherine (2014) Tackling Inequality in the Intimate Sphere: Problematizing Love and Violence in Same-Sex Relationships. In: After Legal Equality. Routledge, Oxford. ISBN 9781315863030

Item Type: Book Section


The campaigns for same-sex marriage currently being fought across the world rely (increasingly successfully) on two arguments: that love between adults is a universal sentiment, goal and human right; and that marriage, being based on love, should, therefore, be open to any adult couple, regardless of sexuality or gender identity (e.g., Osterlund 2009; Grossi 2012). Love, in these arguments, is constructed both as a universal feeling and state of being and a socially constructed set of behaviours and regulatory mechanisms. Whereas the former is understood in essentialist terms as part of the human condition, the latter is seen to be flexible, changeable and responsive to changes in societies. Thus are governments exhorted to change with the times and make marriage more inclusive (see Osterlund 2009). In this chapter, love is problematized, and by extension marriage, in order to draw attention to a gap that has appeared in the debates about equality for those in same-sex relationships.

[img] Microsoft Word
Tackling inequality in the intimate sphere.doc

Download (90kB)
[img] PDF (Administrator use only)
8386.pdf - Published Version
Restricted to Repository staff only

Download (225kB) | Request a copy

More Information

Depositing User: Wendy Tasker


Item ID: 8386
Identification Number:
ISBN: 9781315863030
Official URL:

Users with ORCIDS

Catalogue record

Date Deposited: 16 Nov 2017 16:54
Last Modified: 14 Oct 2020 08:30


Author: Catherine Donovan

University Divisions

Faculty of Education and Society

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item