As the bride and groom head down the aisle to say their “I dos,” they may not realize how many wedding traditions exist due to sexism.
These wedding and marriage traditions are all about misogyny.
The sexism in wedding traditions starts well before the proposal. The hopeful groom must seek permission to wed from a woman’s rightful owner, her father!
Father of the Bride Pays
Many cultures devalue women so much fathers pay men to marry them. The dowry lives on today with the expectation that the bride’s father will pay.
A White Dress
White symbolizes purity. The white dress shows the world that the bride is worthy of marriage because she kept herself chaste before.
And the Veil
The lifting of the veil symbolizes the groom’s permission to break another thin membrane.
Giving the Bride Away
Historically, weddings were property transfers. A father’s property (his daughter) was transferred to the groom. Nowhere is this old idea of marriage more apparent than in the tradition where the father literally “gives the bride away” to her groom.
Honor and Obey
Many marriage vows still contain the words “honor and obey,” but only for the women. Men don’t have to obey their wives; that’s ridiculous.
Groomsmen weren’t always the groom’s best pals! They were his right-hand fighters, ready to battle the bride and her family should they attempt to fight the marriage.
The Garter Toss
The garter toss symbolizes consummation, proving to the world that the bride has been deflowered,
Carrying Her Over the Threshold
In ancient times, women had no choice in marriage. They’d attempt to fight off their grooms, who simply grabbed them and dragged them home.
The misogyny continues after the wedding with the expectation that the woman, not the man, will change her last name, cementing his ownership.
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