- Gender and Relationships
Wedding! – Part of Rik’s HubWay Network
A wedding is defined as the act of marrying or the ceremony that celebrates the marriage or civil union between two people, traditionally male and female, but increasingly same sex partnerships. Wedding traditions and customs vary considerably between cultures, ethnic groups, religions, countries, and social classes.
In some countries, cultures and religions, the actual act of marriage begins during the wedding ceremony. In others, the legal act of marriage occurs at the time of signing a marriage license or other legal document, and the wedding is then an opportunity to perform a traditional ceremony and celebrate with friends and family.
Marriage has gone through significant changes since World War II. In Europe and the USA, up until the 1960s, couples who lived together were generally looked down upon and marriage was the excepted norm. These days, marriage has become a more temporary arrangement and the vow 'to love until death us do part', even when included in the ceremony, isn't taken so seriously.
Modern Wedding Trends
The HubWay Concept
The HubWay is a tightly connected network of Hubs (rather like a subway network). Each Hub is constructed around a single linkword which also links to other HubWay Hubs via alternative meanings or associations with the linkword.
This Hub features the Movie The Graduate where Mrs Robinson seduces Benjamin. For more on Mrs Robinson and SEDUCTION! click here!
Weddings have become less a religious ceremony about a lifelong partnership and more a celebration of a current relationship. This is acknowledged in such practices as selling all photo and reporting rights for celebrity weddings to the press and the signing pre-nuptual agreements.
As the value placed on marriage and the family has declined so the amount of cash spent on weddings (not to mention stag or bachelor parties and hen parties) has increased dramatically in recent years. In the UK ‘stag and hen nights’ have evolved into week long drinking holidays in Eastern Europe.
The average cost of weddings in the US varies from $14 000 to $43 000 depending on where you live and your zip code. In the UK in 2002 the average cost of a wedding was £11 000 (around $20 000). It is therefore no wonder that another significant wedding trend is the introduction of wedding insurance in order to cover the huge costs of the ceremony having to be cancelled or postponed.
The Graduate (1967) - Landmark Movie for Traditional Marriage
The Graduate is a landmark movie that neatly dissects the traditional view of marriage. Benjamin Braddock, recently graduated, is seduced by Mrs. Robinson, the wife of his father's business partner. He then finds himself falling in love with her teenage daughter, Elaine.
Elaine is engaged to someone her parents approve of and they do everything they can to keep her away from Benjamin and ensure the wedding goes ahead as planned. The movie ends with the traditional romcom dramatic chase with Ben aiming to get to the church in time to stop the marriage.
Although he fails to stop the wedding, he rescues the bride from the altar, fights off the groom and congregation and he and Elaine, complete with bridal gown, escape on a local bus.
In older films the bride would have been rescued before the wedding but the plot resonates with the anti-establishment thinking and rebellion of the 60s. The good news is Ben has found true love and has rescued Elaine from a loveless marriage. The movie suggests that a wedding should be about much more than just a family event and a social occasion.
Is Traditional Marriage Dead?
Does the decline of the traditional marriage matter? When children aren’t involved you might argue that living with several partners isn’t a problem. But unfortunately break ups are always painful and lead to bitterness.
Where children are involved then the ideal of a lifelong relationship makes even more sense. Whatever we might feel about traditional marriage, a lifelong relationship is an ideal foundation for bringing up a family.
Of course marriages do break down and I for one accept that sometimes an amicable divorce is the best way forward, but ideally marriage should be for life.
10 Tips for a Successful Marriage
- Focus less on the expensive wedding ceremony and more on your commitment to one another.
- Get all the advice and councilling you can before you get married
- If you’re not sure about sticking together for life then why not put off the wedding for a while?
- The wedding is primarily about the couple being married and their relationship rather than a family event, a party for friends or a publicity stunt
- Marriage is an equal partnership and both sides need to make sacrifices to make it work
- A sense of humour and the ability to laugh at yourself is a great aid to a successful marriage
- Take the time to really listen to one another
- Put off having children until you’re fairly sure the marriage is going to work out
- Set aside regular quality time alone together. Watch a movie, play a board game or if all else fails just make out and make love!
- Marriage is about unconditional love not just romance. Fancying someone may not be enough for a lifetime together
Finally, don't forget to explore the HubWay Network.
HubWay - Where words and their meanings take you on a journey of infinite possibilities ...
Downton Abbey - Matthew and Mary Wedding?
The TV show Downton Abbey is a big hit all over the world. One of the story lines that has captured everyone's imagination is the relationship between Matthew and Mary.
So will ice queen Lady Mary finally give way to passion and marry Matthew in series/season 3?
Their relationship has always been tempestuous with issues of class and money getting in the way of the obvious romantic chemistry.
To find out what will happen in season 3, read Downton Abbey What Happens Next?