Pros And Cons Of Polygamy

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1.1 Introduction The word ‘polygamy’ is taken from the Greek word ‘polygamia’ meaning ‘the state of marriage to many spouses’. It is the practice of being married to more than one spouse (Collins English Dictionary, 2012). Polygamous relationships can involve all spouses living together as one family unit, or each spouse living in separate households with minimal contact and only sharing a common husband or wife. The number of polygamous relationships is actually increasing, and though many people might assume that the reason behind polygamy is one’s religious beliefs, this is not always the case. The purpose of this paper is to examine the pros and cons of polygamy, and at the end of which conclude whether or not it should be supported.…show more content…
Polygamy is practiced in many religions. It is commonly practiced in Buddhist regions such as, Sri Lanka, Tibet, and Thailand, where men have a ‘main wife’ and multiple ‘minor wives’ (Rose, 2013). It is also famously practiced in Mormonism, with its founder Joseph Smith having multiple wives and claiming that Mormon men should practice polygamy, but only if commanded to do so by God (The Straits Times, 2014). This was based on the verse taken from the Book of Mormon, “For if I will, saith the Lord of Hosts, raise up seed unto me, I will command my people; otherwise they shall hearken unto these things.” Here, God had just condemned polygamy, before saying that unless He should command otherwise, people should not practice polygamy. Secondly, Islamic countries like Saudi Arabia and Sudan encourage polygamy, with the limitation that a man can have a…show more content…
The scarcity of a gender is one factor that could lead to polygamy. In a country where disease is rife, women may prefer to marry disease resistant men, and hence are willing to share their husband with other women who have the same desire if it means their children will be fathered by a healthy individual. A lack of options is another reason, as American sociologist Stephen K. Sanderson claimed that “poorly educated women from rural areas and with low socioeconomic status are much more likely to be in a polygamous marriage,” compared to “well-educated women from higher socioeconomic backgrounds,” as they have more marital options. Another reason for polygamy is women’s need of financial support. A woman who is incapable of supporting herself and her children may prefer to have her husband take on multiple wives as opposed to having her husband divorce her and leaving with children to look after and no home. As long as the man supports all their wives and children, the women in a polygamous marriage can live quite happily (Rose, 2014). Lastly, a man’s desire for economic wealth is also a reason for polygamy. A man can stand to gain new alliances and powerful connections through marriage, and marrying multiple women may increase his chances of increasing his economic empire and his rise to power. In some countries, having multiple wives equals one’s legal status, as it demonstrates the man’s

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