Cultural Approaches to Marriage

March 11, 2004

Source: Pacific News Service

On March 11, 2004 Pacific News Service published an article on the ways that different cultures and societies define marriage. "The American Anthropological Association, the national professional organization of teachers and scholars who study human organization across the world, denounced the proposed Constitutional Amendment prohibiting gay marriage. They know that over a century of research has shown that marriage between one man and one woman is not the only or even the most successful way to organize a family... Although monogamy between opposite sexes is the most common arrangement for joining spouses around the world, few societies find it beneficial to restrict marriage only to this form." The article discusses marriage practices in Tibet, in Inuit cultures, among Native Americans, and among the Kwakiutl Indians of the Pacific Northwest.