Confucius (n.d.) gives such a psychological perception of marriage: “Marriage is the union of two different surnames, in friendship and in love….to furnish those who shall preside at the sacrifices to heaven and earth” (Su, 1922, p.54).
But the question that arises here is: how should the willing parties of marriage consent? There are many cultures and societies, all over the world, which allow the system of matchmaking. In this system, a man (often a woman), called ‘matchmaker’, is supposed to negotiate between the two parties of a marriage. This system of matchmaking allows the parties to know each other well. On the other hand, there are societies which do not care much about the matchmaking system. Rather these societies such the western peoples allow the wiling male or females to choose their spouse. This western norm of allowing people to choose their spouse is based on the assumption that the true basis of the husband-wife relationship is ‘love’, mutual understanding and cooperation between the two. (Phillips, 1988, p. 34-38) Indeed both arranged marriage and love marriage have advantages and disadvantages. They are described below.
In arranged-marriage, family-values are emphasized while choosing the spouse. Since the elders of the families are directly involved in the matchmaking process, the rate of quarrel, divorce, and discordance between husband and wife is lower than love-marriage. But the elders’ support, in an arranged marriage, sometimes may turn into interference. Thus, elderly interference, though may not cause divorce or break-up of a relationship, maybe the source of sufferings. Especially, in eastern culture, women are the worst-sufferer of elderly interference, as .it is reported in an article, “Some marital arguments and conflicts are settled better when only the spouses are involved. When the in-laws interfere and impose their views, this can cause stress to the marriage.” (Professor’s House, n.d., pars. 5) .