The Geography of Love

Same-Sex Marriage & Relationship Recognition in America (The Story in Maps)

Fifth Edition

by Peter Nicolas & Mike Strong

There is no question that the most prominent gay rights issue in the United States today is the right to marry. Yet accurate, objective information about same-sex marriage and relationship recognition in the United States is difficult to come by. In this book, Seattle-based authors Peter Nicolas & Mike Strong combine their respective training in law and geography to depict the history and current state of marriage and relationship recognition rights for same-sex couples in the United States in words...and in maps.

This publication begins with a detailed history of efforts to achieve marriage rights and other forms of relationship recognition (such as domestic partnerships and civil unions) for gay and lesbian Americans, from the first lawsuit filed in 1970 in Minnesota to the federal court order striking down Utah's ban on same-sex marriage—and just about everything (judicial and legislative) in between.
Next, it provides detailed information on relationship recognition in the United States, including:  
• which states permit same-sex couples to marry or to enter into other types of legal unions; 
• the rules for entering into or terminating such relationships;  
• a comparison of the rights that each state provides to same-sex couples; 
• the extent to which same-sex relationships entered into in one state are recognized by other states; and  
• which cities and counties have domestic partnership registries and equal benefits ordinances.  
That is followed by a look at efforts to ban same-sex marriage at the ballot box, including:  
• selected vote details by state and county;  
• a closer look at where support for such efforts was weakest and strongest; and  
• a comparison of the processes for amending state constitutions across the United States. 
For those same-sex couples interested in getting married in one of the jurisdictions that permits same-sex couples to marry, the book features a table that provides detailed information about the prerequisites for getting married, including: the marriage license fee; minimum age and blood test requirements; whether non-residents are permitted to marry; and the waiting period, if any, between applying for a license and getting married.

The fifth edition is completely up-to-date, and provides extensive coverage of the U.S. Supreme Court's 2013 decisions regarding the Defense of Marriage Act and California's Proposition 8, as well as the laws and court decisions legalizing same-sex marriage in Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, Minnesota, New Jersey, New Mexico, Rhode Island, and Utah.

Click on the tabs at the left to read a sample excerpt, to learn more about the authors, or for information on how to purchase a copy. If you already own a copy, click on the "Updates" tab for legal developments that have occurred since the book went to press.

Click here to read a review of the book in The Seattle Times.

Click here to read a review of the book by New Hampshire Public Radio.


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