Monday, November 12, 2007

Arranged Marriage System in India

An arranged marriage is a marriage that is arranged by someone other than the persons getting married. Arranged marriages happen in the Middle East, parts of Africa and in Asia. The purpose of such marriages is to form a new family unit while respecting the chastity of everyone involved. Sometimes the term is also used when match making is done by agents, priests or religious leaders.

Historical Context

Until 20 years ago the Indian middle class was almost non existent. There were hardly any opportunities for business and finding jobs was difficult. During these times, parents took responsibility to ensure better education and support their children financially with all their lifetime savings. The “Arranged marriage system” contributed in ensuring that all members of a family lived together, thereby minimizing expenses of running multiple households.


  • Arranged marriages offer protection and security to women. As parents decide the family, they make use of maturity while choosing suitable spouses for their children.
  • Arranged marriages place far more emphasis on integrity, diligence, humility and generosity. People get married based on practical reasons, and work on building affection later. Strong characteristics like the ones described above are very conducive to building love and affection in Indian marriages. As a result, these marriages are much longer-lasting than many Western marriages.
  • The primary emphasis of Arranged Marriages is not on physical beauty. In this system the spouses get to know one another on a practical level first, looking beyond trivial issues such as physical appearance.
  • The system ensures consolidation of family property, heritage and preservation of culture.

Male Family Perspective

Unlike some of the western nations, India has a family oriented society. Men are expected to stay home after they are married and help their parents through old age. The control of the household is still retained by parents. Since men live along with their parents, parents take an active role in choosing the appropriate match for their sons

Women Family Perspective

The primary emphasis for a female’s parents is to ensure a secure social and financial future for their daughters. They look for a family where their daughter would go through a minimal adjustment process to assimilate into her new household.

The Future

India is are already witnessing a change where today’s generation prefers to live in nuclear families rather than joint families. The new generation does not like the interference and social pressures that accompany the "Arranged Marriage System".As India grows and breaks the old shackles of tradition, the relevance of the Arranged Marriage System will be reduced.

1 comment:

Nitin said...

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