Jun 6, 2013

Salaried thoughts.

I recently read a post on Quora.com that talked about marriages and salary expectations. ( The Post )
My thoughts on why this is so.
(For those who cannot read the post on Quora, the question was : Why (do) Indian brides, mostly educated, who are looking for grooms expects (a) much higher income the(a)n their own?)

I think it all comes down to

1. The patriarchal attitude embedded for centuries in Indian minds. "Man should earn more or he will live off my girl's money. The more, the merrier."
2. Status symbol. "Boy earns much more than my girl does. My girl is worth it."
3. Girls themselves feel "If am worth so much, my husband should be worth more." Thing is, money is used to measure worth. And not character or other reasons.
4. And men "My ego is big enough to gobble you up if you bring more bread to the family than me."

Somehow, I feel in a way it is a better choice since, it'll bring in more harmony. Especially, in arranged marriages. You have no clue how the other person is, yet. Better to start off on the right foot.
I know of instances where my friends have had inquiries about their bank balances for proposals.

Bottomline : Unless this society changes from patriarchal to equal, (no, I dont think that is gonna happen anytime soon.) I dont think men can stop striving to better women.
And to men: Try harder. We were slow to start, but fast to catch up and better.

Update :
While I put this down to words, a friend of mine, who is also a palaeontologist, updates me on the evolutionary reasons for these choices.

Evolutionary speaking men and women invests a lot of energy in bringing an offspring in to the world, they contribute energy and genes, men gives half the genes and women the other half, but you see a woman has to bear the baby for 9 + months, its a tedious process and needs a huge investment of energy and nutrition,there is an inequality in parental investments,Ancestral females who had the right psychological mechanisms to find mates of higher value more sexually attractive than those of a lower value, would have been more reproductivly successful.Thus, females evolved preferences (information processing biases) that would enable them to assess such traits, and find them sexually and romantically attractive a female needs a man who could take care of herself and her baby and in order to do that the male should be compatible of providing her and her offspring (who shares genes from each) food, shelter and protecting from protection from other males. This is traits have evolved over the course of time as good financial prospects, older males, high social status, and an industrious character which are all signs of resource acquisition.

Further reading, look for the works by Thornhill and R.L.Trivers