Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
This is a great post, Agnes, and a really interesting topic for discussion.  

It also is one of the few things I can talk about with some authority -- NO! not because of all my marriages!  C'mon people! -- because it's an area I've done actual (ACADEMIC!) research.

There's so much in here, that it's difficult to find a starting place.  I guess my first point would be that marriage has, until very recently, in our cultures been, basically, a legal contract not unlike property contracts.  This is still underlying the ideals of it being "romantic" or "holy."

Our churches were more involved when they were basically governing bodies.  But marriage is still a contract.  I've gotta run some errands, but more later.

Maybe we can eventually make language a complete impediment to understanding. -Hobbes

by Izzy (izzy at eurotrib dot com) on Mon Jan 30th, 2006 at 05:13:08 PM EST
Great that I thought about a topic on which you will be happy to contribute Izzy. Less doubting, all of a sudden :-)

When through hell, just keep going. W. Churchill
by Agnes a Paris on Mon Jan 30th, 2006 at 05:25:45 PM EST
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