What are the similarities between marriage and slavery?

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thanatassa eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The relationship between marriage and slavery has varied in different historical periods and among different religious communities. In ancient Rome, for example, both wives and slaves were considered in the paternal power (in patria potestas) of the head of the household. They were not actually independent people under the law and could not hold property or bring lawsuits or otherwise act independently. In England, until the passage of the Married Women’s Property Act in the 19th century, married women could not own property separately from their husbands, and could not, except in very rare circumstances obtain divorces, just as slaves could not hold property or leave their masters. Both women and slaves did not get the right to vote until late in the 19th century in the United States.

omgitzchaden | Student

you choose to be married but u dont choose to be a slave ;)

najm1947 | Student

Marriage is a social contract between a man and a woman to live together, fulfil their responsibilities according to a predetermined code of ethics (Religion) produce children to maintain the continuity of human race and share the happiness and sorrows as closest friends. This contract is made for the life time but can be terminated by any of the two subject to conditions, though not liked in most of the religions. Wife is not the property of the husband and cannot be sold or transferred to a third person.

Slavery is absolute submission to the master by the slave. He/she is required to do as the master wishes. Only the master has the right to free the slave or make the slave to pay an amount determined by the master to get free. Master has also the right to sell the slave to anyone at his/her sole discretion. The slave does not have any rights what so ever, not even the right to live.

Based on above notions, there is no similarity in marriage and slavery.