Divorce in Iran & Women in the Arab World
In the first two months of this Iranian calendar year (late March to late May) alone, more than 21,000 divorce cases were logged, according to official statistics. The rise in the number of couples choosing to split up has angered conservatives in Iran who see the increase in divorce as an affront to the values of the Islamic Republic. Last month, Mustafa Pour Mohammadi, the current justice minister who is also a cleric, said that having 14 million divorce cases within the judiciary is “not befitting of an Islamic system,” according to the Iranian Students News Agency. Some of the causes for divorce in Iran, like many other countries, include economic problems, adultery, drug addiction or physical abuse. But the increase in the divorce rate points to a more fundamental shift in Iranian society, experts say.
Most families in America consider children an extra expense as they involve themselves in servicing mortgages and saving for retirement. A family is an important social institution in the society. The role played by a family is incomparable to the roles played by other institutions although disregarding them is unethical. Marriage is sacred and a very demanding venture that requires good understanding and positively influenced decisions. Regardless of someone’s cultural beliefs, it is important to ensure that two people who decide to get married have the trust and love for each other. Marriage should not be based on financial gain, peer pressure or solution basis. Polygamy is tolerable in the society because it offers an alternative to divorce, which is normally an expensive and traumatizing experience.
The previous situation, where a Westernized political elite imposed legal reforms on societies that were still largely very traditional, may now be reversed. In the wake of the Iranian example, some Middle Eastern governments are seeking to reassign an inferior legal status to women at a time when an ever-growing segment of their societies has been influenced by the women's liberation movement in the West. Under these circumstances it seems certain that the legal status of women in the Middle East will remain a hotly contested issue.
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Barakat, Haim. Marriage and Divorce Patterns. 1993. Web.
Barakat, Haim. The Basic Characteristics of the Arab Family. 1993. Web.
Rearden, Jason. 19 Things You Should Do Before You Get Married. Thought Catalog. 2012. Web.