Family law mediates and structures life's most intimate relationships. It establishes rules that order the relationships of members of family units and between families and society as a whole. The rules reflect many of society's most critical value premises--about gender roles, parent child relationships, sexual behavior, and how people should order and arrange their family lives. Social policy regarding families is a central focus of many disciplines, law being just one. This course examines the rules regarding the making and breaking of legally recognized relationships, especially those between marital partners and parents and children.