Back to: Jss2 Social Studies (NVE)
WEEK: 5 & 6
Marriage is a social and legal union between two individuals, typically recognized and sanctioned by cultural or religious institutions, and often with legal implications. It is a significant milestone in many people’s lives and is considered a cornerstone of human civilization, providing a framework for the formation of families and the continuation of human society. Throughout history, the institution of marriage has taken on many forms and has varied widely between cultures and religions, reflecting the complex and multifaceted nature of this social construct. Today, marriage continues to be an important and evolving institution, with changing attitudes towards gender roles, sexuality, and human rights shaping the way that couples approach this significant commitment.
MEANING OF MARRIAGE
Marriage is a legally recognized union between a man and a woman, who take on the roles of husband and wife. According to religious beliefs, particularly the Bible, marriage is considered to be the first institution established by God. The story of Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden serves as an example of the divine origin of marriage, as God brought the first man and woman together as a married couple.
Marriage serves as a binding force that brings together two individuals in a committed relationship, uniting them as a single unit. It is through the vows and promises made in a marriage that a man and woman become husband and wife, signifying their commitment to each other and to their shared future. The institution of marriage is considered to be a sacred and significant aspect of many cultures and religions and holds a central role in the formation and preservation of families.
Types of Marriage
- Monogamy: A marital relationship between one husband and one wife, based on the principle of exclusivity and faithfulness, where the couple is committed to building a life together as a single unit.
- Polygamy: A marital relationship in which a man has more than one wife, prevalent in some cultures and religions, and based on the idea of shared responsibility and resources within the family.
- Polyandry: A marital relationship in which a woman has more than one husband, less common and practised in limited parts of the world.
- Inter-ethnic marriage: A relationship between individuals from different ethnic groups, reflecting the increasing cultural and ethnic diversity in modern societies.
- Intra-ethnic marriage: A relationship between individuals from the same ethnic group, often based on shared cultural beliefs and values.
- Christian marriage: A religious ceremony that takes place in a church and is conducted by a priest or pastor. The couple takes marriage vows and exchanges rings, and a certificate is presented to them as a symbol of their union.
- Muslim marriage (Nikkah): A ceremony conducted according to the principles of the Holy Quran, usually performed by a Muslim priest in the bride’s home or mosque.
- Court marriage (Ordinance marriage): A legal ceremony that takes place in a court registry, often chosen by couples who wish to have a secular or non-religious wedding.
- Same-sex marriage: A marital relationship between individuals of the same gender, recognized and legalized in many countries, reflecting the changing attitudes towards LGBTQ+ rights.
- Arranged marriage: A type of marital relationship in which the families of the couple play a significant role in the selection and arrangement of the marriage, common in many traditional cultures, based on the idea of preserving family ties and promoting social stability.
- Common law marriage: A type of marital relationship in which the couple lives together for a certain period of time and is considered to be married in the eyes of the law, even if they have not undergone a formal ceremony or obtained a marriage license.
- Civil marriage: A type of secular wedding that takes place in a government registry, recognized by the state as a legally binding union.
- Destination marriage: A type of wedding in which the couple travels to a different location, such as a foreign country or a remote location, to exchange their vows and celebrate their union, becoming increasingly popular among couples who want to create a unique and memorable experience for their wedding.
Purposes of Marriage
- Marriage serves as a crucial method of perpetuating the human population within society. Without it, the loss of members cannot be compensated.
- Marriage represents a partnership between a husband and wife, where they provide companionship to each other.
- Through marriage, the families of both the husband and the wife are brought together, forming a united front.
- Marriage provides a sense of security for the woman and any children involved, offering protection and stability.
- The bond of marriage enables the husband and wife to support each other in various aspects of life.
- In the eyes of society, being married is seen as a mark of responsibility and maturity.
- The institution of marriage creates a structured environment for the upbringing and education of children.
- In certain traditional communities, having multiple wives is considered a sign of prestige and high social status for the man.
- Marriage helps to establish a sense of commitment and loyalty between the partners, fostering trust and dependability.
- It provides a legal and financial framework for the couple, regulating matters such as property and inheritance rights.
- Marriage can help to strengthen the bond between partners, encouraging growth and development in the relationship.
- By sharing the joys and challenges of life together, marriage can bring immense happiness and fulfilment to both partners.