The Economics of Jordanian Marriage

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My friend Nadine Ajaka wrote this piece for Al Jazeera in May– she’s a videographer and photographer and has done work throughout Jordan, as well as in parts of Iraq and Kurdistan. This piece looks at the trend of delaying marriage until late 20’s, specifically in Jordan. With high unemployment rates and the extremely high cost of Jordanian weddings, couples are delaying marriage, and by proxy, delaying the status of adulthood that comes along with it. For women especially, markers of adulthood are conferred through marriage – dating is still taboo in Jordan, but marriage gives women license to move out of their family’s home, to experience sexual intimacy, achieve financial independence, and create a life for themselves. Although some couples are delaying marriage to complete their education, or to feel ready for commitment, many more are waiting for financial independence. This trend is occurring throughout the Middle East and North Africa, but is still more prevalent among educated and urban youth. Read more about this trend on Al Jazeera.




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