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deinstitutionalization of marriage

Definition of Deinstitutionalization of Marriage

(noun) The gradual dissolution of norms maintaining the need for marriage and marriage role expectations.

Examples of Deinstitutionalization of Marriage

Deinstitutionalization of Marriage Pronunciation

Pronunciation Usage Guide

Syllabification: de·in·sti·tu·tion·al·i·za·tion of mar·riage

Audio Pronunciation

– American English
– British English

Usage Notes

  • Plural: deinstitutionalizations of marriage
  • Variant spelling: de-institutionalizations of marriage

Related Quotation

  • “By deinstitutionalization I mean the weakening of the social norms that define people’s behavior in a social institution such as marriage. In times of social stability, the taken-for-granted nature of norms allows people to go about their lives without having to question their actions or the actions of others. But when social change produces situations outside the reach of established normsindividuals can no longer rely on shared understandings of how to act. Rather, they must negotiate new ways of acting, a process that is a potential source of conflict and opportunity. On the one hand, the development of new rules is likely to engender disagreement and tension among the relevant actors. On the other hand, the breakdown of the old rules of a gendered institution such as marriage could lead to the creation of a more egalitarian relationship between wives and husbands” (Cherlin 2004:848).

Additional Information

Related Terms


Cherlin, Andrew J. 2004. “The Deinstitutionalization of American Marriage.” Journal of Marriage and Family 66(4):848–61. doi:10.1111/j.0022-2445.2004.00058.x.

Cite the Definition of Deinstitutionalization of Marriage

ASA – American Sociological Association (5th edition)

Bell, Kenton, ed. 2014. “deinstitutionalization of marriage.” In Open Education Sociology Dictionary. Retrieved February 6, 2023 (https://sociologydictionary.org/deinstitutionalization-of-marriage/).

APA – American Psychological Association (6th edition)

deinstitutionalization of marriage. (2014). In K. Bell (Ed.), Open education sociology dictionary. Retrieved from https://sociologydictionary.org/deinstitutionalization-of-marriage/

Chicago/Turabian: Author-Date – Chicago Manual of Style (16th edition)

Bell, Kenton, ed. 2014. “deinstitutionalization of marriage.” In Open Education Sociology Dictionary. Accessed February 6, 2023. https://sociologydictionary.org/deinstitutionalization-of-marriage/.

MLA – Modern Language Association (7th edition)

“deinstitutionalization of marriage.” Open Education Sociology Dictionary. Ed. Kenton Bell. 2014. Web. 6 Feb. 2023. <https://sociologydictionary.org/deinstitutionalization-of-marriage/>.