Propositions Institute in the Public Square

What is Parenthood? Who is a Parent? Why Does it Matter?

Marriage: A New Conversation

May 2, 2013

A Conversation with Linda C. McClain, hosted by David Blankenhorn.

Thursday, May 2nd at 6:00 pm EST

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Linda C. McClain teaches law at Boston University and is the author of The Place of Families and (with James E. Fleming) Ordered Liberty: Rights Responsibilities and Virtues. Linda co-edited the new volume of scholarly essays What is Parenthood? Contemporary Debates About the Family ("This book is a much needed model for how to bring civility and reason into the culture wars," says Katherine Bartlett of Duke Law School.)

David Blankenhorn is founder and president of the Institute for American Values.

With David, Linda will discuss:

  • When we say parent, what do we mean? A biological tie? A legal status? A caregiving role? All three in one person, possibly? All three in one person, preferably? Do differing views on this question help to explain differing views on gay marriage?
  • When it comes to promoting child well-being, can parenthood be separated from marriage? Separated from couplehood? What does a comparative view of parenthood reveal?
  • Does one family structure, on average, produce the best outcomes for children? For society?
  • How can research on parenthood inform family law and policy?

This event takes place at the Institute for American Values's Center for Public Conversation in New York City. Limited live seating is available — for reservations contact Alicia Savarese at or call 212.246.3942.

About A New Conversation on Marriage

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Upcoming Events

June 13: What Are the Rights of Donor-Conceived Persons?

Alana S. Newman and Ralph Buchalter

Past Events

May 23: What Do Two Men Named Glenn Loury Say about Sex, Marriage, Class and Race?

Glenn Loury and Glenn Loury II

May 16: Can Marriage Be Saved?

Charles Murray

May 2: What Is Parenthood? Who Is a Parent? Why Does It Matter?

Linda C. McClain

April 18: Is the Marriage Gap Driving American Inequality?

Lawrence M. Mead

April 4: Will Gays Change Marriage or Will Marriage Change Gays?

John Corvino

April 3: Will Liberals Help to Save Marriage?

Peter F. Steinfels and Amy Ziettlow

March 19: Should Religious People Join the New Conversation?

R. R. "Rusty" Reno

March 5: Can We Get Beyond the Marriage Culture Wars?

Jonathan Haidt