Marriage Is Not Considered A Bond

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In many cultures, marriage is not considered a bond agreed upon by two people in love, but instead is a social agreement that redefines the parties relationship. Rarely does this social agreement take the participants’ individual wishes into account. These arrangements can create a strain, mostly on the woman, between loyalty to her blood family and loyalty to her new husband’s family. According to Lila Abu-Lughod, the author of Veiled Sentiments: Honor and Poetry in Bedouin Society, this is the “problem with marriage.” This problem created, in Bedouin societies, is a conflict with agnation and the dominant bond agnation is meant to carry. It may allow for a person to become more connected with their spouse than with their agnate bonds, which is not the ideal. This affection often has to be masked behind ulterior motives, such as sharing of stories. In the case of Bedouin societies, it is through Ghinnãwa, the poetry the Awlad ‘Ali use to communicate their deepest feelings to their loved ones. These poems are typically shared in private settings and with those they hold close bonds to, especially spouses. These sentiments passed through ghinnãwa cannot be shared in any other contexts, as they are thought to be too private for public knowledge, and also may be scrutinized if they convey true affection between a husband and wives. It mitigates the “problem” of marriage in that it allows for the private expression of emotion between partners while ensuring that

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