Marriage, a History

  • by Stephanie Coontz
  • Narrated by Callie Beaulieu
  • 15 hrs and 32 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Just when the clamor over "traditional" marriage couldn't get any louder, along comes this groundbreaking book to ask, "What tradition?"
In Marriage, a History, historian and marriage expert Stephanie Coontz takes listeners from the marital intrigues of ancient Babylon to the torments of Victorian lovers to demonstrate how recent the idea of marrying for love is - and how absurd it would have seemed to most of our ancestors. It was when marriage moved into the emotional sphere in the 19th century, she argues, that it suffered as an institution just as it began to thrive as a personal relationship. This enlightening and hugely entertaining book brings intelligence, perspective, and wit to today's marital debate.


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful


First, the narration was very dry. This is a much more interesting book than the narration suggests.

Also, the narrator pronounces nuclear "nuke-you-ler" about a thousand times. Nuclear families are obviously going to come up a lot in a book like this, and every time it did it made me physically cringe.
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- A. Fritz

Listen and you will be stunned

If you thought you knew something of the history of marriage, you are most probably mistaken -- a lot. This start with prehistoric times, goes through Greek, Roman, Egyptian, middle ages, Renaissance, 1800, 1920s, the golden age of marriage, 1970-1990, today, and most probably tomorrow. If you think that is a tall order, it so is. Ms. Stephanie Coontz does an excellent job laying it all out. You will find yourself shaking your head often. You will realize how far we come and how seriously marriage has been used as tool. Sometimes you will be angry, sad, dismayed. Though when you finish, you will understand the institution better. I am better off for listening to this. Thank-you Ms. Coontz.
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- GH

Book Details

  • Release Date: 06-01-2016
  • Publisher: Tantor Audio