Arranged vs Forced Marriages
Between Arranged Marriages and Forced Marriages we can identify certain differences. Both are still a common practice in many parts of the world; however, the forced marriages are fading away slowly. Especially, in the Eastern part of the world, arranged marriages and forced marriages were quite common even though now they are being replaced by love marriages. This is mainly because the role of a woman has changed greatly throughout the years. Back then, the woman was sold to the groom, or else given for a large sum of money in the case of forced marriages. However, in Arranged Marriages, the bride was not sold but the families of both the groom and bride engaged in a process of matching the families according to factors such as their caste, wealth, etc. Especially, in countries where there is greater emphasis on the caste system, arranged marriages were the main type of marriage. Between Arranged and Forced Marriages, we can identify a number of differences that will be dealt with in the article.
What is Arranged Marriage?
First let us pay attention to Arranged marriages. In arranged marriages, parents and other well-wishers engage in matching spouses based upon looks, physical appearance, social and economic backgrounds. For centuries, arranged marriages have been widely popular in many cultures as the best way to ensure a happy and long married life. Many westerners frown upon these arranged marriages as they feel that, in this system, bride and groom are almost unknown to each other and have no final say in the selection of their spouses.
However, as opposed to earlier practice where a groom got to see his spouse only after the wedding, now the norms have changed and today the consent of both the bride and the groom is necessary before finalizing any arranged marriage. In this case, before becoming the bride and groom, the man and woman are allowed to spend some time together to get to know each other. Unlike in the case of a forced marriage, this allows both parties to voice their opinion as well. It is only through the consent of both that the marriage takes place. In the modern world, people prefer love marriages to arranged marriages. However, this is not always negative. There are many a possibilities where arranged marriages have also led to a successful wedded life for people.
What is Forced Marriage?
This type of marriage is in sharp contrast to forced marriage where a woman or a little girl is forcibly married to an adult. Here, the consent of the girl is not considered necessary as her family members accept the proposal from the groom that is monetarily very attractive to them. In a sense, the girl is either sold or traded to the man in exchange for money or something else of considerable value. It has been seen that many times; these forced marriages are a mismatch as the groom is old but wealthy while the girl is very young and innocent. These marriages often lead to domestic violence, rape, abuse, neglect, and servitude as the girl is terrified and often beaten to have sexual relations with her older husband. This highlights that between Arranged Marriages and Forced Marriages a number of differences can be identified. Now let us summarize the difference in the following manner.
What is the Difference Between Arranged and Forced Marriages?
- Though forced marriage is also a type of arranged marriage, it is clear that here consent of the girl is not required at all.
- Parents of the girl in a forced marriage are lured by money that is not the case in arranged marriage.
- While, in arranged marriages, groom and the bride are of similar age, it has been seen that, in forced marriages, there is a considerable age difference between the girl and the groom. In most cases, the groom is double the age of the girl that is what leads to all sorts of problems later in the marriage.
1. The Arranged Marriage” by Vasili Pukirev [Public Domain], via Wikimedia Commons
2.”The Ambitious Mother and the Obliging Clergyman” by Illus [Public Domain], via Wikimedia Commons