Definition of Marriage
Marriage represents a multi-level commitment, one that involves person-to-person, family-to-family, and couple-to-state commitments. In all societies, marriage is viewed as a relatively permanent bond, so much so that in some societies it is virtually irrevocable. The stability provided by a life-long promise of remaining together makes marriage the institution most suited to rearing and socializing the next generation of members, a necessary task if the society's norms, values, and goals are to be maintained and if the society itself is to be perpetuated.
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MARILYN IHINGER-TALLMAN (1995)
DAVID LEVINSON (1995) REVISED BY JAMES M. WHITE