Polygamy Essay

Polygamy Essay

Length: 1217 words (3.5 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Strong Essays

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When someone “pops the question”, he is normally knelt on one knee, the paradigm of a prince charming. The illusion is shattered when the proposal is not solely performed to one woman, but many. Then, it is not just one bride. It is one of an array of brides. Polygamy, obviously, still exists today. Though no religion mandates it, and it is, in fact, illegal in the United States, it is still a realized phenomenon. Popular occidental culture has veered away from this marriage style. Now a day, a typical westerner prefers monogamy. The emphasis is on the couple, not the several. Both essays, My Husband’s Nine Wives by Elizabeth Joseph and In Defense of Polygamy by B. Aisha Lemu, depict different situations involving polygamy, through a series of personal thoughts, experiences and beliefs. Which arises concerns towards the nature of polygamy and its practices.
In the essay, My Husband’s Nine Wives, Joseph constantly and emphatically describes the difficulties of a monogamous relationship; the western concept of marriage. Marriages dissolve into quarrels between the two involved, and in order to restore order, a compromise is made. This is something that, according to Joseph, should not be done (769). Polygamy offers alternative solutions. Joseph claims, “Pick up any women’s magazine and you will find article after article about the problems of successfully juggling career, motherhood, and marriage” (769). Problems like these eventually lead to frustration, but polygamy offers an alternative, “attractive to the modern career woman” (769). In such a marriage, a woman does not have to worry about living up to the unrealistic guidelines for a perfect wife and mother. For example, while one wife/mother is at work, the children ...


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...he union. A union that is, supposedly, desired by the two people involved.
The arguments proposed by Lemu and Joseph ask much of the woman, and little of the man. In fact, the majority of the arguments have to do with lightening the load of the working woman/mother/wife. Both authors might want to re-think the traditional role of the woman. Perhaps, therein lies the issues many marriages face. Both parties enter the relationship with pre-conceived notions of gender roles that are actually impossible to live up to. If we were to acknowledge that gender roles need to be re-appraised, perhaps polygamy’s value as a positive tool for marriages would decrease.



Works Cited
Barnet, Sylvan, and Hugo Bendau. Current Issues and Enduring Questions : A Guide to Critical Thinking and Argument, with Readings. 8th ed. Boston/New York: Bedford/Saint Martin's, 2008. 769-7

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