A public imperative that governs private lives and is negotatied in familes, marriage is, according to Balzac, "the most important act out of all of those society enforces on us." It is also one of the most hackneyed motives of literature. From the Revolution to the Great War, the way we consider it, however, has changed so much. How is this model, supported by morality and law, in turn endorsed and transformed by custom, considered, in a valued or critical way, or even condemned to death by the representations of time? How was marriage perceived in France during the nineteenth century? Literature, art and history specialists give us their answers, and by doing so help to reconstruct a major part of our history.
This work of 462 pages, is a team-effort, under the guidance of Stéphane Gougelmann (IHRIM) and Anne Verjus (Triangle). Edited in the Publications of the University of Saint-Étienne, in the collection "Des deux sexes et autres" (the two sexes and others) includes 3 parts: