10/13 | Abolishing Coverture

Professors Dorothy Roberts and Bernard E. Harcourt

read and discuss

“Wives, Slaves and Wage Slaves” by Carole Pateman

Killing the Black Body by Dorothy Roberts

Thursday, February 25, 2021

6:15-8:45 pm

Columbia University


This seminar will explore the campaign to end and the abolition of coverture and other forms of men’s domination over women in the marriage context. Under the law of coverture, a married woman essentially became the property of her husband and lost her civil rights to contract or own property, as she was effectively merged into her husband. These de jure relations were ultimately displaced, but had long-lasting shadows over marital relations including, for instance, the exception to rape laws for marital rape. This seminar will explore the long legacy of coverture.


Praxis 13/13 at Columbia University, May 8, 2020