Major Diversities Between Countries

Abstract : Same-sex marriage and registered partnership brought new, unexpected diversity to light between European countries: British or Swiss frequency rates turn out to be ten times higher than Swedish or German rates, hundred times higher than Slovenian rates. This diversity is not to be considered as socially problematic per se. Yet, it has to be explained and the explanation might detect effects of social inclusion or exclusion. Previous studies invalidated the hypothesis that it may be explained by unequal levels of legal and financial advantages coming with the registration (Festy, 2006). This paper tries to formulate new hypotheses. Preliminary results show a major influence of marriage values. But the effects of marriage values seem conditioned by the level of social homophobia that admits or not to come out as a same-sex union to one’s family of origin. They also seem conditioned by differences in family values and practices that we observe in the different parts of Europe. However, many questions remain unanswered by lack of data: in many countries, statistics are lacking, incomplete or show data for three or four years only. But even if the conclusions cannot be more than preliminary hypotheses, they may be formulated and discussed already at this stage, because the international diversity undoubtedly will turn out to be extreme. The study is based on two types of material. First, it relies on socio-demographic indicators of same-sex union registration, marriage values, homophobia and gender inequality. Second, it relies on interviews with same-sex couples, registered or not, in Norway, Denmark, Germany, the Netherlands, Poland, Hungary and France, aiming at a better understanding of motivation for same-sex couples to register or not to register in the concrete circumstances of their social environment.
Mots-clés : same-sex unions Europe
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Conference papers
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Maks Banens. Major Diversities Between Countries. 8th Conference of the International Association for the Study of Sexuality, Culture and Society, Jun 2011, Madrid, Spain. ⟨halshs-00980109⟩



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