Among all the creations, the human being is the best creations in which women will be the crown of creations. Without Woman the purpose of creation through the seed giver (Man) is meaningless and devoid of the perpetuation of generation. Therefore the society feels that man and woman relationships should be governed based on a suitable bond. With this in mind, the concept of marriage has emerged. Dalvir Sing Gahlawat defined the marriage as a “cultural phenomenon which sanctions a more or less permanent union between partners confining legitimacy on their offering” Turn and Turmoil women in Shashi Despande’s novels by Dalvir Singh Gahlawat.
Marriage is one of the feministic perspectives and it is a very complicated and sensitive issue in the human bond. To establish a clan, marriage is a must and human beings have to procreate legal children. Therefore wedding is the entry point in life for men and women. The custom of wedding is indispensable for the creation of the next healthy generation. According to Tamil literature, different types of wedding were performed during the Sangam age. But nowadays only three types of marriage alone are recognized by society. That is a love marriage, arranged marriage and love cum arranged marriage. In the love marriage, the adolescent boy or a girl chose their partner without the involvement of their parents and they get married against the wishes of their parents. In the arranged marriage the proposed couple’s first meeting will be arranged by the respective parents and after the satisfaction of all the terms and conditions between the parents then the marriage will be held between the couple. In the love cum arranged marriage the boy or a girl fall in love with one and another and their parents concede to their wedding. In all these marriages the person involved in this marriage may face both advantages as well as disadvantages in their marital life.
After marriage, the individuality of a woman and her identity seems to be no more value or it becomes non-existent. It merges with her husband. Therefore William Blackstone describes the marriage as “Civil death of a woman”(P137) New Lights on Indian Women Novelist in English by Amar Nath Prasad. The wife does all domestic chores and she rears her children for which she is paid nothing. Her service to the family is not at all recognized and her freedom is also is curtailed by her husband. The male supporter of women’s cause John Stuart Mill rightly observed: “Marriage is the worst form of slavery for women”(P137) New Lights. The above observation is made based on the rigid patriarch system of marriage. In this social setup of marriage, a man is superior and woman is inferior and further woman loses their individuality and identity and further women is always subordinate to man. This kind of subordination of woman leads to the subjugation of women. Germaine Greer observed “that after marriage life has changed radically but not her husband’s” (quoted in Neena Arora 58)
Both before and after marriage man enjoys both the world, home well as career but woman after marriage becomes her husband’s half and therefore she takes his name, religion, family status and she attains her motherhood. The status of wife is accorded by her husband. Balzac correctly states as “A wife is what her husband makes her”(P137) New Lights on Indian Women Novelist in English by Amar Nath Prasad.. Beauvoir also feels “marriage reinforces sexual inequality and confines the woman to domesticity”(P259) Women Empowerment PresentTheway forward by Dr.Deepali Bora
The above reasons make the custom of wedding, suppression for the woman. But Kapur and Sahgal did not discard the custom of the wedding on the whole but they condemned the male’s domination in marital life. The woman feminist Sheila Cronan condemns both marriage and institution of marriage. She argues that the custom of the wedding did not protect the interest of the woman and she further said that marital form protects slavery. She Observed “ Retain the institution of marriage until such time as discrimination against women no longer exists and consequently” ‘protection’ is no longer necessary”(P213) The marriage by Sheila Cronan. The wedding is neither a system of slavery for women nor an escape route from the parental patriarchy’s domination. It is not even a contract between man and woman but it is sanctified by the sacred texts. Their bond is ought to have been based on mutual consideration and understanding similar to that of partnership in business.
The custom and tradition cast upon every parent to get their daughter to be married at the right time irrespective of any nationality. The wedding may be arranged or love marriage whatever it may be. The wedding gives status and pride to the individual in society. The spinster or widow or widower has no entity in society. The concept of the clan is ensured through the wedding. The society makes romantic interest in a woman’s mind concerning the wedding and with this excitement, the woman’s ultimate desire is marriage and therefore they rushed to marry. The wedding will not confer any happiness or does not give any guarantee for the love between husband and wife. The wedding is not the end of life but it is the beginning of a woman’s life. Simone De Beauvoir observed: “Marriage is the destiny traditionally offered to woman by the society.”(quoted in Neena Arora 40)