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Families in societyBoundaries and relationships$
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Linda McKie and Sarah Cunningham-Burley

Print publication date: 2005

Print ISBN-13: 9781861346438

Published to Policy Press Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.1332/policypress/9781861346438.001.0001

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Boundaries of intimacy

Boundaries of intimacy

(p.188) (p.189) Eleven Boundaries of intimacy
Families in society

Lynn Jamieson

Policy Press

This chapter focuses on practices of intimacy, moving the book from an analysis of families to relationships more widely. It notes that there are contradictory claims about the meaning and significance of intimacy and that there has been attention to boundaries in the conceptualisation of intimacy as well as in how it is practised. Typically, two main boundaries have been identified: boundaries between the familial and non-familial, although these are becoming increasingly blurred; and exclusionary boundaries between intimates (traditionally typified as couples) and the wider community, although again this boundary may be contested. The chapter contends that not all practices of intimacy require exclusionary boundaries and that boundaries have been overemphasised in the conceptualisation of intimacy.

Keywords:   intimacy, familial intimacy, non-familial intimacy, couples, personal relationships

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