The problem with polygamy

Philosophical Topics 37 (2):109-22 (2009)
Polygamy is a hotly contested practice and open to widespread misunderstandings. This practice is defined as a relationship between either one husband and multiple wives or one wife and multiple husbands. Today, 'polygamy' almost exclusively takes the form of one husband with multiple wives. In this article, my focus will centre on limited defences of polygamy offered recently by Chesire Calhoun and Martha Nussbaum. I will argue that these defences are unconvincing. The problem with polygamy is primarily that it is a structurally inegalitarian practice in both theory and fact. Polygamy should be opposed for this reason.
Keywords polygamy  polygyny  polyamory  Calhoun  Nussbaum  political liberalism  equality
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DOI 10.5840/philtopics20093727
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