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History teaches that marriage and slavery are on opposite sides of the same coin.Can...

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stacynatalie | Student, College Freshman | eNotes Newbie

Posted March 11, 2012 at 9:35 PM via web

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History teaches that marriage and slavery are on opposite sides of the same coin.

Can you explain this for me?

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William Delaney | (Level 3) Educator Emeritus

Posted March 12, 2012 at 12:53 AM (Answer #1)

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It might be necessary for a young person to get married before he or she understands that, at least for some people, marriage and slavery can be closely related. Marriage usually leads to having children. After that there is not much but work and worry for both parties. I recommend that you look up the subject of "Marriage" in a good book of quotations. Ambrose Bierce in The Devil's Dictionary gives a definition of marriage which is perhaps the most pertinent to your question:

Marriage, n. a community consisting of a master, a mistress, and two slaves, making in all, two.-Ambrose Bierce

Here are some other negative quotes about marriage:

Never feel remorse for what you have thought about your wife; she has thought much worse things about you.--Jean Rostand

Marriage: A word which should be pronounced mirage.--Herbert Spencer

Oh, how many torments lie in the small circle of a wedding ring!--Colley Cibber

Marriage isn't a process of prolonging the life of love, but of mummifying the corpse.--P. G. Wodehouse

It's a funny thing that when a man hasn't anything on earth to worry about, he goes off and gets married.--Robert Frost

Is not marriage an open question, when it is alleged, from the beginning of the world, that such as are in the institution wish to get out, and such as are out wish to get in?--Ralph Waldo Emerson

Marriage is a noose.-- Cervantes

Suspicion, Discontent, and Strife, / Come in for Dowrie with a Wife.--Shakespeare Woman is a grievous curse.-- Euripides

Between men and women there is no friendship possible. There is passion, enmity, worship, love, but no friendship.-Oscar Wilde Friendship can only exist between persons with similar interests and points of view. Man and woman by the conventions of society are born with different interests and different points of view.- August Strindberg Saw a wedding in the church. It was strange to see what delight we married people have to see these poor fools decoyed into our condition.-Samuel Pepys Men dream of courtship, but in wedlock wake.-Alexander Pope A man's wife is more often than not his enemy.- George Gissing

Tolstoy's remark that marriage is "slavery, satiety, repulsion" and means putting up with the proximity of  "ugliness, dirtiness, smell, sores," is matched by Lear's well known outburst: "But to the girdle do the gods inherit, / Beneath is all the fiends; / There's hell, there's darkness, there's the sulphurous pit, / Burning, scalding, stench, consumption...etc., etc."-George Orwell

She possessed no longer for him the sensual charm of the early days, and although he still looked upon her with the eye of desire, for she was fresh and charming, he experienced at times that disillusion so near to estrangement which soon comes to two beings who live a common life. The thousand trivial or grotesque details of existence, the loose toilettes of the morning, the common linen robe-de-chambre, the faded peignoir, for they were not rich, and all the necessary home duties which are seen too near at hand in a poor household--all these things took the glamour from marriage and withered the flower of poetry which, from a distance, is so attractive to lovers.-Maupassant

A young man once asked Socrates whether it was better to be married or to remain single. Socrates told him, "Whatever you do, you will regret it.

 

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