Girls’ marriage in Egypt allows the inter-generational

Added on -2019-09-21

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Girls’ marriage in Egypt allows the inter-generational reproduction of poverty and gender inequalitiesChild marriage is still a widely ignored violation of development rights of women and girls. The issues of girls’ marriage is seen to have been practiced widely in Egypt and various links between poverty and early marriage are seen. There are various socio-cultural issues revolving around the early marriage which are related directly to economic poverty and gender discrimination making the married girls directly vulnerableto the economic and social poverty. The child marriages are seen to increase the vulnerability of the girl child along with impacting the economic dimensions of the poverty. Globally, it is seen that poverty is a major cause along with being the consequence of the early marriage for various girls who are under the age of 18. It is seen that the poor families in the traditional settings use girl marriage of their daughters as a strategy in order to reduce their own economic vulnerability, so as to shift their economic burden which is related to the care of their daughter to the family of the husband. This strategy has been demonstrating negative effects reinforcing the vulnerability of the girl and to her children by enhancing the poverty in her marital home.The younger the girls are during the time of their marriage, the girls are seen to have lower acquired critical skills and have limited personal capacity for managing the adverse situations affecting the overall welfare and economic well-being of her child. The disproportionate access towards the education of the girls is one of the most criticalcause of child marriage in Egypt. Around 13 percent of the female and 3 percent of the males of age 10 and 29 have never been exposed to school education in Egypt. In Egypt, it has been seen that as the girls reach their adolescence, the community norms are seen to dictate them to get married which in turn perpetuates the cycle of illiteracy and poverty (Namoro, S., & Roushdy, R., 2009). Further, the girl marriage further lead to issues in gender discrimination and put undue pressure on the young wives so as to meet the needs of the demanding responsibilities.These young girls also face various restrictions in the case of physical mobility and are also unable to exercise their individual rights within their marriage. This way, the womenare not able to raise their children in dignity and constrain the capabilities of their own child. The children of these girl child also undervalue the participation and contribution of the girl child thereby limiting the possibilities of stability, growth and transformation.
Patriarchal gender norms and religion and other contributing FactorsPoverty as discussed has been considered as the most critical contributing factor to the girl child marriages taking place in Egypt. The girl child are married off to the older people and are seen to receive the ‘bride price’ of livestock or the money from their husbands thereby becoming a method bringing needed resources into the family. The patriarchy has made the women to accept the male control by their respective husband, father, brother etc. as their price for protecting them from the aggression by the other male counterpart. This factor is seen to hamper the autonomy and equality thereby preventing them to achieve their full potential in the society as well as their personal space. Due to the patriarchal gender norms where men have to right to oppress women has constantly being followed in the Egyptian society, there is an immense oppression of women leading to economic as well as interdependence of women in the family and society. The women are suppressed and feel helpless and are seen to be subjected to household violence like punching, choking, setting in fire etc. This leads to subjugation of women and the women and the girl child is seen to accept these norms in the name of society and tradition (Korson, J. & Esposito, J., 1983). According to various religious norms in Islam,the girls must not be exposed to sex education or related information and are married at younger age. According to these religious norms, the sex education would contribute to the promiscuity leading to entering of the girl into a marriage without basic knowledge of the reproductive health. Therefore, even the religious norms deny the girl child of education, good health and economic opportunity and even the right to choose their marriage partner therefore violating their rights. The cultures and religion are seen to provide the leniency of expressing their sexual behaviour to the men but are critically proscriptive while dealing with the female sexual behaviour.

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