Marriage Statistics Essay

1716 words - 7 pages

In How Love Emerges in Arranged Marriages: Two Cross-cultural Studies by Robert Epstein, Mayuri Pandit, and Mansi Thakar we are told that Americans and perhaps Westerners all-together are becoming more obstinate with the idea that love is a must prior to the life-long commitment known as marriage. There are, however, various cultures outside of the west that are composed of those who think the very opposite notion. For example, a maxim for many in India: “first comes marriage, then comes love”. Speaking of India, this scholarly journal introduced a study that entailed 50 Indian couples and concluded that feelings of love between Indian individuals in love marriages decreased somewhat ...view middle of the document...

The concocted educated guess to explain this result was that since “wives are servants, waiting on their husbands like valets, raising children for him like governesses”, then they, understandably, feel like nothing more than domestic tools. Orthodox Jewish marriages were also analyzed sand their results were shown. In these, researchers found no nuances in how they experienced love wether it was in arranged or non-arranged love marriages. So far, all the studies presented have focused on non-western cultures. Now, not all non-western cultures present the same or similar results. Places like Turkey, China, Israel, and South Africa—all being non-western—have shown completely inverse results. Love marriages in theses places were constituted with happier individuals than the ones in prearranged marriages.
All of the above studies were ones the researchers considered prior to conducting their own study. They inspired the question their own study aimed to answer: in arranged marriages, the betrothed are not marrying for love, yet love sometimes emerges in such marriages. How does this occur? The social scientists sought to answer this fair question by conducting two studies through a mixed-method analysis of factors that appeared to contribute to the growth of love over time. The first study was designed to be mostly qualitative and the second study, which was possible thanks to the results of the first, was mainly quantitative in design. For both of the studies, individuals from arranged marriages were located. They had to agree that, for them, love had increased over time. The researchers interviewed the couples with questions like “what factors do you feel contributed to the eventual feelings of reciprocal love?” The researchers then chose 11 of the most unique factors that had supposedly assisted the development of their love. The 30 individuals from 22 marriages were found in online discussion groups and interviewed between May 2006 and February 2009. The interviews were conducted through email or telephone which were recorded with permission. They were asked to pick a number between one and ten that denoted how much love they had for one another on the day they married. Then, they chose a number to represent their love at the time of the interview. Another important questions was asked: what factors they believed contributed to the development of their mutual love. On average, participants estimated the number to be 3.9 for when they first married and, on average, 19.4 years later (so when the interviews were conducted), the love had increased to an 8.5. In one case, an increase from one to a solid ten after only three months occurred for a couple. The average love increase for women was 5.2; the average love increase for men was a lesser, but not too different, 4.1. Most of the 30 couples could offer insight on why they thought mutual love had increased. Common facts mentioned were commitment, physical intimacy, parenting, and disclosure....

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