It is not a matter of generalization Miss/Mrs. Hanan [Archives:2008/1155/Community]
By: Maged Thabet Al-kholidy
In response to my article entitled “To love before or after marriage: a contrast”, issue 1149, 26th of April, 2006, Mis/miss Hanan, one of the readers, has commented on some points related to the advantages of love before marriage. I did really enjoy her manner of discussion and like her viewpoints.
Mrs/miss Hassan started her article with referring to the main idea of the topic, declaring that we can not generalize one the two cases (love before marriage or love after marriage) to better than the other especially in our “intricate society”. As a response, I like to comment on this, making the point clearer for her and for the other readers. The title of my article in its two parts includes the word “contrast” as an attempt to compare between two cases: love before marriage and love after marriage. Such a contrast is not to generalize one case rather the other but to give readers a picture of the differences between the two cases. No one can say that only one way is better than the other for all the society. If I wanted to generalize this, I might have taken only one case and neglected the other. Actually, I stated my aim in Par1 and again in Part2 so that readers get the purpose of writing about such a sensitive topic. What I did in the two parts is only shedding light on the advantages and disadvantages of the two cases without generalizing any case.
I also repeated that I have no opinion about the topic since I have no experiences. The two topics deal with the others' experiences. They show how some people like the first case (love before marriage) and how other prefer the second case (love after marriage). Since there are different opinions, we can not generalize any case because each case has its own conditions and circumstances.
When I left the topic open for the readers especially the married ones who have experiences, I wanted it to be a chance for every one of us to get an idea of these experienced persons. I wanted just to offer real ready-made experiences for those who are in doubt whether to love before marriage or to marry before love. The different opinions and experiences of the readers show what are the negative as well as the positive points of the two cases so that readers become aware of everything and according to the situations and circumstances they can choose the best way for them. The two parts of my articles, thus, are like a call for the experienced persons to share their experiences since there are many inexperienced persons need to learn something that may help them to take the right decision.
Secondly, Hanan has said that “The problem is that engagement tends to create a preordained framework for the relationship, with much fabricated behavior only rarely reflecting an individual's true colors. This period also involuntarily urges each side to accept or overlook issues, especially if the relationship began romantically.”
What Hanan has said is about engagement. She generalizes that engagement is a period in which fiances and fiancees can establish relations with each other. I just wonder if Hanan knows that many Yemeni families, especially in the villages, do not allow any relation between ladies and their fiances. A friend of mine, for instance, has engaged one of his relatives. They were engaged for one and half year. They saw each other only on the engagement day. They could not establish any relation of any kind. They get married without any relation before except the formal engagement which is considered in many Yemeni areas only a means of declaring the engagement rather than establishing relations. I do not know why Hanan is against generalization things in our “intricate society” and suddenly she generalizes this which is not acceptable in many Yemeni families.
Any how, I did really like her opinion about how work offers a chance for ladies and men to know each other well. I am really supporting your view that in engagement everyone tries to show his/her best. But after marriage, many things change.
Finally, I thank Mrs./Miss Hanan for commenting on the topic. I also thank others who sent their opinions to my email. I took all comments into consideration, hoping that all readers share their opinions in such topics related to the society and it problems.
Majed Thabet Al-kholidy is a writer from Taiz, currently doing his M.A. at English Dep, Taiz Uni. He is an ex-editor of English Journal of the University.