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Living In SinCohabiting As Husband and Wife in Nineteenth-century England$
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Ginger S. Frost

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780719077364

Published to Manchester Scholarship Online: July 2012

DOI: 10.7228/manchester/9780719077364.001.0001

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(p.1) Introduction
Living In Sin

Ginger S. Frost

Manchester University Press

This book addresses the legal difficulties posed by cohabitation and the cohabiting couples themselves, including their interaction with each other, their families and wider society. The cohabitees defined marriage as a relationship, an idea, or an act of will. Cohabitation's differences from, as well as its similarities to, marriage is a major theme of this book. The consequences of irregular cohabitation are then explored. The role of the state in defining marriage, but also partly supporting cohabitation, is explained. Additionally, this book highlights the class and gender differences. The difference between the cultural and social significance of figures such as Mary Wollstonecraft and George Eliot is illustrated.

Keywords:   cohabitation, cohabiting couples, marriage, state, class, gender differences, Mary Wollstonecraft, George Eliot

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