1. INTRODUCTIONMarriage is one of the universal social institution. Marriageis essentialfor the procreation of children and satisfaction of sexual urges and it is oneof the oldest socially recognized institution.
The aim of this research articleis to analyse the changing trends in the institution of marriage and factors affectingit. There is drastic change in marriage all over the world over the lastgeneration or two according to recent surveys and studies. Theprocess of change in the social structure is an ineluctable universal socialreality. The changes in the last few decades are very prompt. The processes ofindustrialisation, urbanisation and secularisation have brought about manysocio-psychological changes in the attitudes and values of the people.1.1What is Marriage?Marriage is a close union and equal relationship of a man and awoman. Marriage is defined as legalized union between a man and a woman.
Marriageis a socially identified and approved relationship. Marriage is considered to bea highly sacred institution which allow for meeting of the minds between thespouses for material as well as psychological, i.e.
mental satisfaction. Marriageis relationship not only between both the spouses but it’s a bonding betweentwo families. The real meaning of marriage is the approval of a newstatus, with a new set of privileges and obligations, and the recognition ofthis new status by others. A legal marriage validates a social status andcreates a set of legally recognized rights and duties as well as responsibilities. 1. KINDS OF MARRIAGE3.1 PolygynyIt is a form of marriagewhich involves one husband & many wives. In this one man has two or morewives at a time.
Polygyny is found among Eskimo tribes, Crow & Hfdatsa ofNorth America & African Negroes. In India till today it exists among Muslims& also among some Hindus. It is more frequent than polyandry.Polygyny may take two forms: i. Sororal Polygyny: Inthis a man has two or more wives at a time. Here the wives are sisters orclosely related to each other.
ii. Non-sororalPolygyny: In this a man has two or more wives at a time. Here thewives are neither sisters nor they are closely related to each other.
3.2 PolyandryIt is a form of marriagewhich involves one wife & many husbands. In this one woman marries morethan one man at a given time. It is thought to be widespread in Tibet where theconditions of social life are harsh & where perhaps the efforts of two ormore men are needed to support the family. Some tribes like Namib Bushmen, theYaruro of Venezuela, the Lengua of El Chaco, the Singhalese, the Mundas etc.are some of the tribes where Polyandry is said to exist.
Polyandry may take twoforms: i. Fraternal Polyandry: Inthis one woman marries more than one man at a given time. Herethe husbands are brothers or closely related to each other. ii. Non-fraternal Polyandry: Inthis one woman marries more than one man at a given time. Herethe husbands are neither brothers nor they are closely related to each other.3.
3 MonogamyMonogamy is the form of marriage in which one man marries onewoman at a given time. This is the most widespread form of marriage found amongthe primitives as well as the civilised people and is the leading form ofmarriage. It produces the highest type of affection and sincere devotion.According to Malinowski “Monogamy is, has been, and will remain the only truetype of marriage.” It is practised among the tribals such as the Kadars,the Santals, the Khasis, the Canella, the Hopi, the Iroquois, the AndamanIslanders and few others.
3.4 Companionate MarriageThis is “the marriage of two persons on the understanding that as longas there are no children the marriage may be dissolved simply by mutualconsent.” The root basis of this marriage is companionship. Additional dutieslike care taking of child is not involved.3.5 Experimental Marriage or Live-in RelationshipExperimental marriages are to find out the compatibility of the twopeople before they settle down to a life of permanent union. Before gettingsettled to a permanently in matrimonial relations, couples are allowed to leadmarital life temporarily in order to find out compatibility between them.
2. CHANGING SCENERIO IN THE INSTITUTIONOF MARRIAGEMarriageis considered to be an enduring bond, that’s why it is considered to be aninstitution because institution is permanent. But nowadays due to increasingrates of divorce, marriage is losing its essence of being an institution. There’sa saying that everything changes with time. Looking at the past and the presentis a good example of that.
The way things were done then and the way they aredone now has been changed dramatically so that they can fit into society. Justas things have been changed to fit into the society we live in today, we, asindividuals have also been changed to adapt to these changes occurring in oursociety. An example of this is clearly evident in the change in our values,especially towards marriage. Today, couples do not value the sanctity ofmarriage as in the past. This is clearly reflected through the lessening ofreligious influence in marriages, the increase in cohabitation and divorce. Inthe past, marriages were seen as a covenant before God to bring two peopletogether. Today, however, the religious aspect is largely missing in theinstitution of marriages and this is simply why it is not valued as much as itwas in the past.
4.1Factors Responsible for these ChangesMarriage has always been obligatory andunavoidable for an average Indian. Marriages in India enjoy a broad consensusand play a pivotal role as a means of procreation and carrying forward lineage.Of late it has been observed that the institutionof marriage in India is undergoing a drastic change. This change is mainly due to economic prosperity and the internetrevolution. The internet has exposed people to the different social trendsprevalent across the world and has revolutionized the institution in anotherwise conservative Indian society.Also,these changes are due to i. Increasing Rate of DivorceDivorce has increased steadily over the 20thcentury.
The biggest increases were during the 1960s-1970s. Conflict is bad forkids, because kids are the one who suffers a lot in the process & afterdivorce. They go through mental trauma, start feeling depressed & thefeeling of loneliness comes to their mind.
ii. Lessening of Religious Influence in Marriages Today,the religious aspect is largely missing in the institution of marriages andthis is simply why it is not valued as much as it was in the past. That’s whyin today, couples do not value the sanctity of marriage as in the past.
This isclearly reflected through the lessening of religious influence in marriages,the increase in cohabitation and divorce.