27 Feb

Once upon a time in Germany there lived a  man who gave his wife a simple card that said, ” You are like a star in the sky.”

It had the drawing of a star.

An expression of love couldn’t have been more innocent and simple.

Long after that, one day a man was rummaging through an old cupboard where he stumbled upon this card written by his grandfather to his grandmother.

Karl Benz made the star drawn by his grandpa, his legendary logo. Today, it symbolizes automobile excellence as it proudly looks at the world from every Mercedes that carries it. More importantly,  it’s a timeless expression of old fashioned love between a man and his wife.

I feel those good ol’ days are gone forever, amigo. Those were days when marriage outlasted every test of time and it’s become a fragile institution today.

In general, we all know the codes of marriage.

  • Man and woman must come together, run a home and sustain their family
  • The act demands a certain amount of commitment and sacrifice
  • It asks the self to take a backseat for the sake of family

And thus for eons, marriage became all the more important, celebrating the coming and living together of man and wife. Of woman and husband. It also demanded a monogamous bonding to protect ourselves from the anarchy of fragmented relationships.

BUT – as long as history remembers, the implicit code was MALE DOMINENCE.

How did this start?


Those were the day of brute power in prehistoric times. Physical force was needed for hunting, protection and fighting hostile invasions from other tribes, including predators.

The woman as a child bearer, stayed back in the cave waiting for her club man return to their warm fire lit cave.

This went on until one day the human race decided to live by the river banks.


The rivers were a confluence of agriculture, economy, trade, transport, food, fishing and stability. It was the cradle of social groupings, social hierarchies, culture, traditions and later on great civilizations sprang up along the river banks.

The river dwellings were the beginning of family groupings where economy and wealth became the focus of all marital alliances. Marriages also took on a sacred and religious tones . The old customs and rituals are followed till today. More importantly a marriage had to have the blessings of a priest and the people where this tradition continues even now.

But does this age old institution stand threatened?


As time passed by, women wanted to shrug off this male dominance.  They began to resist ancient ways that chained their freedom and made them play a subordinate role at home. This cry for liberation is believed to have begun in the European renaissance era. This was a radical period in Europe where it began to emerge out of its dark age of wars, tyrannical rules, superstitions and cruelty.  Europe strode into a world of new ideas, asking questions, breaking old myths, searching for new answers and slowly the concept of democracy and liberty started taking shape. These expressions found their way into arts, music, literature, philosophy, dance and writing. Scientific discoveries and technological innovations were made and created. It was the beginning of the industrial revolution.

Most importantly, the child of this era was the printing press invented by Gutenberg. It was something like the digital revolution today.

Books were published in the printing presses and knowledge spread rapidly across the continent. This lead to education and awareness. Women stepped out of homes to work in factories to support their families economically.

Their  wheels of liberation began to turn slowly and steadily.

2011 AD

We’ve have crossed the threshold of a digital revolution. The microchip is breaking  global boundaries and bringing down the barriers between men and women.

In the days ahead she’ll be taken more seriously than ever before.

There is economic freedom for her with more choices. She’s discarding her chains and questioning her role in marriages. She’s not in a mood to put up with suffocation if that turns out to be the problem. She’s searching for her own spaces in  a world -designed for man.

Is that a good thing to happen?

Are we and our marriages, full of cross roads and choices, heading towards the exhaustion of a lonely and confused world? It is predicted that loneliness will be the largest disease to infect planet earth.

Is marrying late the answer to a sedate but stable relationship?

Isn’t youth about the rampage of passions, unleashed and unchained and there fore too restless for a married life?

And so sang Bob Dylan long ago ,

” How many times can a man turn his head

And pretend he just doesn’t see?

The answer my friend, is blowin’ in the wind,

The answer is blowin’ in the wind.”

The new age woman is here to stay.

1 Comment

Posted by on February 27, 2011 in MARRIAGE: A DOOMED AFFAIR?



  1. Shimolee Shah

    February 27, 2011 at 11:39 am

    We have talked about this a lot of times in our feminist theory class. The question is do you really think they had family system during the cave man years? The family system started way later. So it is impossible to trace where male dominance started


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