There comes a point in everyone’s life that this question or subject is brought up - “Are you dating anyone?” “When are you guys getting married?” When these questions are asked from family and friends, it pressures people into finding that special one. Even though, people do experience those desires and questions for themselves; does it make it right to feel that need? What is marriage? Is marriage a contract or love? What if marriage is not what people perceive it to be? What if marriage is not the happily ever after often seen in the movies? Laurie Essig and Lynn Owens are two scholars that wrote a piece entitled, What If Marriage Is Bad for Us? that contended the institution purpose of marriage is obsolete and in reality bad for society, and how marriage can lead to changed, unhealthy, and distressed.
People believe that marriage is easy and is the key to love and happiness, but in reality marriage is harder than it looks. Everyone marries for different reasons, for good or for bad. People today don’t understand the meaning of marriage; it is more than just money and appearance. Seeing today’s world of marriage is being influenced by media shows like Jerry Springer, Judge Judy, and Murray makes you realize how society today identifies marriage different. Couples who live unmarried will be happier and have more choices than those that are married in agreement with Catherine Newman’s essay called I Do. Not.: Why I Won’t Marry in the book “Acting Out Culture: Reading and Writing “, by: James S. Miller. Catherine Newman is a writer and an author
As stated in our text, various factors can bind married couples together, such as economic interdependencies, legal, social and moral constraints, relationship, and amongst other things. In the recent years some of these factors have diminished their strengths. The modern generation sees marriage in a different perspective altogether. Individuals today feel they are stable independently, they do not need to rely on their spouse for emotional or financial support. Many are career driven and soar to conquer their dreams over settling down with a family. Such untraditional views have increased divorce rates.
382) About two centuries ago a new standard to the way marriage should be viewed came about. This set higher expectations for marriage. This change made more strict divorce laws, in turn made it harder to end a good marriage, it gave individuals more freedom to refuse a spouse. “The husband became the family’s economic motor, and the wife its sentimental core.” (p. 385) By the late eighteenth century marriage became a private contract between a husband and wife and was not regulated by church or state. However many working-class families did not adopt the new norms until the twentieth century. Different culture and countries still argued their views, many changed their description of an ideal mate.
Established with Adam and Eve, still surviving, marriage is the oldest institution known. Often the climax of most romantic movies and stories, whether it may be ‘Pride and Prejudice’ or ‘Dil Wale Dulhaniya Ley Jaein Gey’, marriage has a universal appeal. It continues to be the most intimate social network,
“Marriage and Love”, a short essay by Emma Goldman, gives a wonderful argument regarding love and marriage, in fact, she nails it. Marriage does not equal love or has anything nothing to do with it. Not only that, but the marriage could also easily kill whatever relationship was there prior to the declaration. Marriage is simply a social construct, one that imposes control by religion, tradition, and social opinion (Goldman 304). However, if marriage is such the ball and chain that we all joke about, then why do people get married?
XXXX ENG 111 28 January 2011 American Marriage in Different Eras Marriage has changed dramatically over time in the many years it has been around. What do think Marriage was like 100 years ago? The article, “American Marriage in Transition”, describes how many different types of marriage there are and how people have changed their view on it. Andrew Cherlin (the sociologist of the article) does a great job going in depth explaining American marriage. He arranges the different marriages in three different categories; Institutionalized which was the earliest type of marriage, then Companionship around World War II, and currently we are considered Individualized.
In over half a century, marriage has transformed from being a social requirement to simply being an option in today’s society. What has caused this change? Many institutions in our society have changed drastically along with marriage. Although these institutions have not caused marriage to be optional, they do strongly correlate with the decreased value. The economy, education, religion, and government have all altered since the 1950s. When any institution encounters a change, all other institutions are affected. Family is a major institution in society, and I believe that marriage is an important aspect of this institution. Cohabitation, religion, women in the work world and divorce have all effected the way marriage is viewed today.
In “For better, for worse: Marriage means something different now,” Stephanie Coontz reveals the worldwide changes in people’s attitudes and behaviors towards marriage. According to Coontz, education and the social norms are the reasons why marriage has become nonessential. Being single and going through a divorce are more acceptable now. The motivations of marriage have turned from economic dependence into personal willingness. In fact, Coontz’s words make me wonder the true meaning of marriage. Even though the meaning has changed over times, I believed that I still hope to get married.
In Andrew J. Cherlin’s essay “American Marriage In Transition”, he discusses how marriage in America is evolving from the universal marriage. Cherlin’s definition of the universal marriage in his essay is the man is the breadwinner of the household and the woman is the homemaker. In the 20th century according to Cherlin, the meaning of marriage has been altered such as the changing division of labor, childbearing outside of marriage, cohabitation, gay marriage and the result of long- term cultural and material trends (1154). During the first transition of marriage, Cherlin discusses how in America, Europe, and Canada the only socially accepted way to have sexual relations with a person and to have children is to be married (1154). The second change in marriage occurred in 2000, where the median age of marriage in the United States for men is 27 and women is 25 (1155). Many young adults stayed single during this time and focused on their education and starting their careers. During the second change, the role of law increasingly changed, especially in the role of law in divorce (1155). It is proven in today’s research marriage has a different definition than what it did back in the 1950’s. Today marriage can be defined as getting married to the same gender or getting remarried to someone who already has kids. The roles in a marriage are evolving to be a little more flexible and negotiable. However, women still do a lot of the basic household chores and taking care of the
Shall We Test the Waters Felicia Cole Colorado Mesa University Marriage a long-standing fundamental to functional society. Marriage is a perspective of what used to be socially the beginning of a nuclear family. A nuclear family consisting of a father, mother, and children. In the twentieth century it was considered proper in society to be married before having children. However, this is no longer the case in modern United States. What aspects are there that make our generation susceptible to cohabitation instead of marriage?
Over the past decades, how Americans perceive the marital relationship greatly reformed, illuminating society’s values. In the past, marriage use to represent a legal contract to bear children and acquire finances, but today, “In all too many communities in the US, especially poor and minority ones, marriage is a retreat” (Wilcox et al., 2005, p. 5). Rather than observing marriage as an obligation, Americans now perceive a marriage to entail intimate commitments between affectionate partners. America transformed its values from the society and family to the individual level. Of the major values changes, which occurred over the past decades, this article exemplifies an increase in single-parent homes, cohabiting, and divorce. Due to America’s expansion of individualism and materialism, individuals no longer perceive their marriage as life long commitments. This transformation occurred because of a shift in societal values; society no longer places stigma on divorce and single parents, which aided in the increasing numbers of marital shifts. In fact, Americans tend to enter marriages with unrealistic expectations, expecting their partner to fulfill all of their needs without conflict. It stands as our unrealistic expectations and perceptions that caused a shift in marriages.
Women in Buddhism “The men may have started this war, but the women are running it.” In the beginning of the war, around 1941, most American women lived as their mothers previously had. Women were supposed to have jobs just until they were married and those who did work after they were married or were mothers were regarded with a sense of pity and scorn from society. In a pre-war poll, 82 percent of Americans believed a wife should not work if her husband did. A majority of Americans believed there should have been a law to prohibit it since rural and city women, alike spent about 50 hours a week on household chores alone.
Social conservatives blame divorce, cohabitation, illegitimacy, and the demise of the traditional family for society's ills, from poverty, crime, and juvenile delinquency to the moral decay and destruction of the American way of life. In the 1970s, marriage was at its lowest but by the late 1990s there was a reappearance of marriage, seen in the leveling off of the divorce rate. Although the claims for the value of marriage by conservatives and gay-rights proponents "were from two ends of the spectrum, they came together — at least at the rhetorical level — for what marriage...accomplishes and how crucial it is as a social institution." (Gallagher, 2002)