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Rich Kazakhs Revive Polygamy as Women Seek Poverty Escape

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  1. 1. "More than 40 countries, almost all in Asia and Africa, still recognize polygamous marriages" - given this fact, can it truly be said that traditional marriage is between one man and one woman?

    • Yes. Those 40 countries are not traditional. America is traditional.
    • No. Marriage has taken many forms over time.


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Filed: Timeline

Given the choice between love and money, Samal, a tall, curly-haired 23-year-old woman from a village in southern Kazakhstan, would take the cash.

Struggling to pay rent and tuition on her salary as a waitress in Almaty, the Kazakh commercial capital, Samal says she’d drop her boyfriend in a heartbeat if a wealthy older man offered to make her his second wife.

“Becoming a tokal would be a fairy tale,” Samal says during a break at the cafe where she works, using the Kazakh word for the youngest of two wives, who traditionally gets her own apartment, car and monthly allowance.

...

“It’s become prestigious to have a tokal,” Ayan Kudaikulova, an Almaty socialite and author of one of those novels, said in an interview in her cafe, surrounded by purple walls and bearskin rugs. “They’re like Breguet luxury watches,” Kudaikulova said, wearing a red Alexander McQueen pantsuit and an Alain Silberstein timepiece. “Unfortunately, not having a junior wife is now shameful for wealthy men.”

...

Kazakh lawmakers have tried to legalize polygyny, having two or more wives, at least twice since 2001, most recently in 2008, when the measure failed after a female parliamentarian insisted on including polyandry, or multiple husbands, as well.

More than 40 countries, almost all in Asia and Africa, still recognize polygamous marriages.

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-12-02/rich-kazakhs-revive-polygamy-as-young-women-seek-poverty-escape.html

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Filed: K-1 Visa Country: Yemen
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Plenty of polygamous marriages in the Bible and plenty of anthropological evidence that it was a common practice until relatively recently, so who says monogamy is traditional? That being said the idea repulses me on a personal level. Part of me says to each their own and the other part says glad it's illegal here.

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Filed: K-1 Visa Country: China
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Old Chinese saying ... it is better to be the second wife of a rich man than the first wife of a poor one.. My wife's

grandfather had two wives.,,,Common in that part of the world until recently. (Mao's era)

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Old Chinese saying ... it is better to be the second wife of a rich man than the first wife of a poor one. . My wife's

grandfather has two wives.,,,Common in that part of the world until recently. (Mao's era)

Same with my wife. Well, look at that, we have something in common after all. Cheers!

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A second wife? I've got enough troubles with one....

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Filed: IR-1/CR-1 Visa Country: China
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The Torah describes many marriages, names the husband and wives, for polygamous marriage.

What's the dealio, what's this label of 'traditional' marriage?

Plenty of polygamous marriages in the Bible and plenty of anthropological evidence that it was a common practice until relatively recently, so who says monogamy is traditional? That being said the idea repulses me on a personal level. Part of me says to each their own and the other part says glad it's illegal here.

I think it'd form a tighter family unit, if it was not illegal in the USA, Canada or Mexico.

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Actually I have heard of the rich man having one "official" wife (legally married) and a second "unofficial" wife, but all assets are divided between the two should he come to a sudden end of his life. That is how they get around the laws. That and knowing who to pay off as most of the rich that do this are well connected politically too. My friend mentioned this to me when I visited back in 2003. It sounds like in the Kazakh culture the "traditional" marriage is one to an older wife and then to a much younger wife to continue to have children. I also have enough trouble keep the one wife happy; I do not know what I would do with two.

Dave

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