Natural mothers, putative fathers, and innocent children: The definition and regulation of parental relationships outside marriage, in England, 1945-1959

Janet Fink

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

14 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This article investigates how, during the 1950s, English legislative reform relating to the issues of affiliation, adoption, and legitimacy was influential in redefining the rights and responsibilities of parental relationships that lay outside and across the boundaries of marriage. The problems and debates that arose from the implementation of these reforms are used to illustrate the centrality that the ideals of monogamous marriage and the nuclear family had in the conceptualization of such relationships. They are also drawn upon to demonstrate the contradictions and paradoxes that arose from attempts to define the meaning of parenthood for mothers and fathers not attached through a marital relationship.

LanguageEnglish
Pages178-195
Number of pages18
JournalJournal of Family History
Volume25
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2000

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father
marriage
regulation
rights and responsibilities
reform
nuclear family
parenthood
legitimacy
Marriage
England
Ideal
Parenthood
1950s
Responsibility
Centrality
Legitimacy
Paradox
Conceptualization

Cite this

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