Подпись: polyandry The condition or practice of having more than one husband at one time. Подпись:Подпись:ies have found that polygyny is associated with lower fertility among wives (Anderton & Emigh, 1989), although other studies have found no differences and a few have even found higher rates of fertility (Ahmed, 1986). However, the majority of the research supports the conclusion that wives in polygynous marriages have lower fertility rates. This is because husbands in polygynous marriages must divide their time between each of their wives, which decreases the chance of impregnation for each individual wife. Therefore, it may be more likely that polygyny developed as a strategy for men to gain prestige and power by having many wives, whereas women could gain the protection of a wealthy man.

In Islam, a woman may have sex with only one man, but a man may marry up to four wives. Al-Ghazali, the great Islamic thinker and writer of the 11th century, believed that polygyny was permitted due to the desires of men. What determines whether a Muslim man has multiple wives in most Islamic countries today is his wealth more than anything else, for he usually sets up a different household for each wife. Another reason for polyg­yny in many Muslim countries is the desire for a male child; if one wife does not deliver a male heir, the man may choose a second and third wife to try for a boy (Donnan, 1988).

Polygamy also occurs in France, where primarily African couples have practiced it for many years (M. Simons, 1996). As of 1996, it was estimated that there were 200,000 people living in polygamous families in France. But the practice has met with much re­sistance. In 1996, the French government ruled that France will recognize only one – spouse marriages, and all other types of marriage will be annulled.

One woman commented on the negative aspects of polygamy: “You hear everything, your husband and the other wives. You hear how he behaves with his favorite, usually the new one. The women end up hating the man. Everyone feels bad inside” (M. Simons, 1996, p. A1). However, polygamous husbands have a different view. One polygamous husband says:

My father did it, my grandfather did, so why shouldn’t I? When my wife is sick and I

don’t have another, who will care for me? Besides, one wife on her own is trouble.

When there are several, they are forced to be polite and well behaved. If they misbe­have, you threaten that you’ll take another wife. (M. Simons, 1996, p. A1)

Polyandry (PAH-lee-ann-dree), in which a woman has more than one husband, is much less common than polygyny, and it is usually used to keep together inheritance. For example, in Tibet, a woman may marry several brothers in order to avoid cutting up the inherited property. The same rationale is used in many consanguineous (con-san- GWIN-ee-us) marriages, in which a woman marries her own relative to maintain the integrity of family property.

In the majority of U. S. states, consanguineous marriage is illegal and has been since the late 19th century. However, in many Muslim countries in northern Africa; western and southern Asia; north, east, and central India; and the middle Asian republics of the former Soviet Union, marriages take place between relatives between 20% and 55% of the time (Bittles et al., 1991). In Islamic societies marriages between first cousins are most common, whereas in Hindu states of south India uncle-niece and first-cousin marriages are equally common. Incidentally, marriages between certain cousins are legal in many U. S. states.

Finally, there are also some interesting postmarriage practices that take place out­side the United States. For example, in Iran the bride’s mother and mother-in-law will sleep close to the marriage bed on the wedding night and both will inspect a special handkerchief that provides evidence of virginity (Drew, 2004). Family members often travel together with the couple on the honeymoon, and the groom’s mother remains with the newlywed couple for the first few weeks of marriage. It is her job to set the household guidelines and rules.

Extramarital sex is forbidden in many cultures but often tolerated—even in cultures in which it is technically not allowed. For example, infidelity is considered a grave trans­gression in Islam and is punishable, according to the Koran, by 100 lashes for both part­ners (Farah, 1984). However, there are a number of Muslim societies, such as many in Africa (Kayongo-Male & Onyango, 1984) and Pakistan (Donnan, 1988) in which adul­tery is tacitly accepted as a fact of life.

Those countries that tolerate extramarital sex often find it more acceptable for men than for women. In Zimbabwe, for example, women were asked what they would do if they found out their partners were engaging in extramarital sex: 80% reported they would confront their partners, 15% said they would caution their husbands, and 5% were indifferent. But when men were asked the same question, 60% replied they would divorce their wives, 20% would severely beat their wives, 18% would severely caution her, and 2% would express disappointment and ask their partner to change (Mhloyi, 1990). In China, elderly neighborhood women keep watch in “neighborhood commit­tees” and report suspicious extramarital activities (Ruan & Lau, 2004).

In some cultures, extramarital relations are replacing polygamy. In some African so­cieties in which having multiple wives is becoming less accepted, men may set up a se­cret second household in which a woman is kept as his wife without a ceremony—and without any of the legal rights that accrue to a wife (Kayongo-Male & Onyango, 1984).