Discuss the influence of culture on romantic relationships (8 marks + 16 marks)
Every experience of romantic relationship is very different, whether its a relationship you've got into at school, or whether its a relationship that your family have arranged for yourself when you are thinking about getting married. There are many different experiences and these experiences are vastly different for each culture. The western culture (e.g USA, the UK) are very different in terms of relationship when compared with the non-western cultures (e.g India, Thailand).
One distinguishing difference between these culture is the relationship being voluntary or involuntary. In the UK, the population lives in predominately urban settings, by urban settings, this is an area that has been built up with skyscrapers and a large number of people. For the population of western cultures there is more chance of going outside and meeting new people and it is more a voluntary choice. Comparing this with non-western cultures however these individuals belong to less geographical areas, and so due to the lack of social mobility from one area to another, these individual have less choice and so it is more involuntary for them to enter into a relationship with someone who possesses qualities they desire in their potential partner. They are limited to the people they have grown up with, and whom they have have a daily interaction with. For romantic relationship the influence of geographical place in the non-western culture is largely influential for the relationship.
However it can be said that these voluntary relationship are not necessary better. Research from Epstein in 2002 found that in the non-western cultures the divorce rates are low, and about half of the spouses within arranged marriage have reported falling in love with one another. This research shows that the influence of cultures can have a positive outcome on a marriage, and so the choice is not necessary important, but to have less choice and leave it down to your family could mean a more successful marriage. Therefore the credibility in…