Monday, March 14, 2011

Arranged marriages


I keep getting irritated by smug westerners judging arranged marriage. So I thought I'd make a chart to make it clear. Each box in this chart assumes a marriage happens. We then ask if the family and the couple agrees.

"Don't care" = Indifferent.

Note that its only forced arranged marriages that are evil. Of course those still happen, with mostly women being exploited, and I would gladly join forces with the smug westerners to fight this.

But note that there are other kinds of arranged marriages. Particularly, the lower-leftmost square. This is how millions of Indians get married. Since they don't have access to dating, when they feel like they'd like to start a family, they let their parents arrange their marriages. I'm not denying that this would feel weird to a westerner. But that is a cultural difference, and I'd like to see a bit more tolerance for arranged marriage.

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