Ethnology: An International Journal of Cultural and Social Anthropology, Vol 47, No 3 (2008)

POLYGYNOUS MARRIAGE IN THE MIDDLE EAST: STORIES OF SUCCESS AND FAILURES

Vered Slonim-Nevo, Alean Al-Krenawi, Bar Yuval-Shani

Abstract


Qualitative data were collected from interviews with 100 Bedouin-Arab husbands, wives, children, and some extended family members of polygynous families in the Negev of Israel. Respondents were selected on the basis of self-reported levels of family functioning. Distinct contrasts were found between familial relationships in high functioning families and low functioning families. Differences occurred between husbands of low and high functioning families regarding reasons for a second marriage, how the marriage was received, and relationships with wives and their children. Such constructs can help enrich anthropological theory and improve professional psychosocial intervention. (Bedouin-Arab, family functioning, Middle East, polygynous families)

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