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Is the institution of marriage a purely private concern, like ordinary friendships, and like baptisms, Bar Mitzvahs, and other religious celebrations? Or is marriage an institution of public significance, which should be recognized, supported, and regulated by law and the state? Professor George will argue for the public significance of marriage and will defend the view that marriage and the family are among the central pillars on which decent societies rest. He will also explore the relationship between marriage and the other pillars of healtthy and dynamic societies.
Prof. George is a former member of the President’s Council on Bioethics, and previously served as a presidential appointee to the United States Commission on Civil Rights. He is the author or editor of numerous books, including The Meaning of Marriage. In addition to holding the McCormick Chair in Jurisprudence, Prof. George is the Founder and Director of the James Madison Program in American Ideals and Institutions at Princeton. In 2008, he received the Presidential Citizens Medal, one of the highest civilian honors that can be conferred by the United States. Prof. George is a graduate of Swarthmore College and Harvard Law School and holds a doctorate in philosophy of law from Oxford University.