On Life-long and Fixed-term Marriage: A Study in Estrangement

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterAcademic


A long-standing rule of family law is that marriage is concluded for an indeterminate period of time. Notwithstanding the possibility to divorce one’s partner after marriage, it is at present impossible to agree upon matrimony for, for example, two or five years. This contribution considers whether this is indeed the most appropriate rule to adopt. After an attempt to establish the origins of marriage as a permanent bond in the Western legal tradition, this view is contrasted with the Islamic Mutah and with failed proposals to introduce a fixed-term marriage. The core of the article consists of a discussion of the arguments in favour and against accepting temporary marriage.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationComparative Law
Subtitle of host publicationMixes, Movements and Metaphors
EditorsSean Donlan, Jane Mair
Place of PublicationLondon
PublisherRoutledge/Taylor & Francis Group
Number of pages11
ISBN (Electronic)9780429423246
Publication statusPublished - 2020


  • marriage

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