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Fifty Years of the Divorce Reform Act 1969

Edited by: Joanna Miles, Daniel Monk, Rebecca Probert

ISBN13: 9781509947881
Published: February 2022
Publisher: Hart Publishing
Country of Publication: UK
Format: Hardback
Price: £85.00

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The enactment of the Divorce Reform Act 1969 was a landmark moment in family law. Coming into force in 1971, it had a significant impact on legal practice and was followed by a dramatic increase in divorce rates, reflecting changes in social attitudes.

This new interdisciplinary collection explores the background to the 1969 Act and its influence on law and society. Bringing together scholars from law, sociology, history, demography, and film and literature, it reflects on the changes to divorce law and practice over the past 50 years, and the changing impact of divorce on different people in society, particularly women. As such, it offers a 'biography' of this important piece of legislation, moving from its conception and birth, through its reception and development, to its imminent demise. Looking to the future, and to the new law introduced by the Divorce, Dissolution and Separation Act 2020, this collection suggests ways for evaluating what makes a 'good' divorce law.

This brilliant collection gives insight not only into this crucial piece of legislation, but also into a key period of societal change.

Family Law
1. Impasse: Changing Cultures of Divorce in British and American Films, 1930-1955
2. Men, Women, and Divorce Law Reform in the 1950s and 1960s
3. Behind Casanova's Charter: Edith Summerskill, Divorce and the Deserted Wife
4. Re-evaluating Putting Asunder
5. Divorces by Fact Proven Over the Past Half Century in England and Wales: The Historical Context, Statistical Trends and Future Prospects
6. From “Cruelty” to “Behaviour”: Spouses Behaving (badly?)
7. Divorced from Reality? Literary Depictions of Divorce Law from 1971 to the Present Day
8. British Muslim Communities, Islamic Divorce and English Family Law
9. Dissolution, Divorce and Changing Practices of Commitment
10. Royal Divorce