Friday, May 14, 2010

It's been two years...

...since the May 12, 2008 earthquake in Sichuan province.  I just read an article called China's Arranged Remarriages.  The article is beautifully written and thoughtfully explains the cultural forces that lead families, officials, and even former in-laws to pressure earthquake widows and widowers to remarry as soon as possible.  Go read it.

I recently came across an interesting example of re-marriage pressure in a student journal.  She was writing about her friend's father, a divorced (or widowed?) man recently diagnosed with cancer.  Knowing that he might have only a few more months to live, his family pressured him into marrying as soon as possible so that his remaining days would be happier.  They found a woman and bullied the marriage into existence.  The only problem is that no one in the family likes the woman, least of all the the cancer-stricken husband or his college-age son.  So they live in the same house with a woman they can't stand, who lounges on the couch all day while they cook and clean.

The couples in the article I mentioned above are more fortunate.  Their marriages are mostly happy, and they are hopeful about the future.

1 comment:

  1. I read your suggested article---very interesting to learn how different cultures recover and rebuild from tragedy. One thing that often results is other people coming along side those suffering ---I think back to 2 years ago and the tornado and flooding in Iowa and how it brought about the best in people...