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Divorce As A Socio-Legal Process

Divorce As A Socio-Legal Process

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Published by CareyH231
Divorce Help
Divorce Help

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Categories:Types, Business/Law
Published by: CareyH231 on Jan 24, 2012
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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 ==== ====Divorce Helpdivorcesecrets.1shopdeals.net ==== ====The family is a complex and dynamic institution in India. Families in India are undergoing vastchanges like increasing divorce and separation rates, domestic violence, inter-generationalconflicts, and social problems of the aged parents. In contemporary research, divorce and re-marriage are viewed not as single, static events, but aspart of a series of transitions, modifying the lives of children. In addition to the trauma of divorceitself, the transition related to divorce often involves geographic moves, the addition of step-siblings and a new set of extended family members. Definition of divorce: Divorce -partial or total - is the dissolution of a marriage by the judgment of a court. Partialdissolution is a divorce "from bed and board," a decree of judicial separation, leaving the partiesofficially married while forbidding cohabitation. Total dissolution of the bonds of a valid marriage iswhat is now generally meant by divorce. It is to be distinguished from a decree of nullity ofmarriage, or annulment, which is a judicial finding that there never was a valid marriage. According to the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955, 'any marriage solemnized, whether before or after thecommencement of this Act, may, on a petition presented by either the husband or the wife, bedissolved by a decree of divorce'1 on the grounds mentioned therein. Among the Hindus, who form a major religious group in India, marriage is considered as apermanent, life-long and sacred union. For a Hindu in general, a Hindu woman in particular,marriage is a sacrament and hence unbreakable. Divorce was fairly an unknown phenomenonamong the Hindus before the passing of the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955 and the Special MarriageAct 1954. The amendment to the Hindu Marriage Act in 1976 is an improvement on the previouslegislation relating to marriage and makes divorce easier. There are certain matrimonial offences,which entitle the aggrieved spouse to file for a divorce, available under the matrimonial laws.These are cruelty, adultery, and bigamy. Divorce by mutual consent is available under the HinduMarriage Act, 1955. The Hindu Marriage Act, 1955 differentiates the concept of 'divorce' from such other concepts asseparation2, desertion3 and annulment4. A divorce is that process by which a marriage,recognized as valid, can be revoked in the lifetime of the partners who then revert to single and isfree to remarry. But in reality, divorce is a major life transition that has far-reaching social, psychological, legal,personal, economic, and parental consequences. The nature of divorce as a socio-legalphenomenon is very interesting and enigmatic. The present study is an attempt to learn the
persuasive power of the social factors in determining the status of a divorcee. Literature Survey: Numerous studies in the sociological literature in the west have examined and analyzed thephenomenon of divorce and its implications. In India, considerable research on divorce has beendocumented, albeit on lesser scale compared to the west. The main reasons for the limitednumber of empirical studies on divorce in India, are the lower divorce rates, and lack of adequatedata [Amato, 1994]. It has been found that various studies related to marriage, family and divorcehave been conducted at various periods of time. These studies, despite offering vital insights intothe subject, circumscribed their scope to the demographic and causative factors of divorce; the"pre-divorce" stage, which a crucial determinant is of "divorce process", has not received adequateattention. Demographic data on divorce As per Census 2001, eight per cent of the total married population [Two per cent of the totalpopulation] in Andhra Pradesh is divorced. Four per cent of female population in Hyderabad city isdivorced. Besides, there is an increase in the number of divorced also. Total number of divorcedpopulation in the city of Hyderabad increased to 7433 in 2001 from 2850 in 1991. Nearly half ofthe total divorced population in the city of Hyderabad and also Andhra Pradesh belong to the agegroup of 25-39 years. Research Questions: The present study is an attempt to scrutinize the influence of social factors on the process ofdivorce. The present study proposes to consider the following research question: It is generally assumed that there will be adverse and far reaching social and legal consequencesof divorce, especially among the Hindu women, because the Hindus have been traditional in theiroutlook and marriage is considered as a sacred union among the Hindus. Is this statementrelevant for the contemporary, urban, modern and westernized outlook about the status ofwomen? The Location Of The Study- Twin Cities Of Hyderabad And Secunderabad: Greater Hyderabad Urban Agglomeration, including the twin cities of Hyderabad andSecunderabad alone accounts for 24 per cent of urban population in the state of Andhra Pradesh.The population of Hyderabad district has gone up from 3145939 in 1991 to 3829753 in 2001.Hyderabad, now nicknamed as "Cyberabad", the capital city of the state of Andhra Pradesh ismoving at a fast pace in the development of information technology and infrastructure. Information technologies are drastically changing the way one conducts one's activities. Yet, thesocial atmosphere in the state appears to be still feudal in outlook and practice. The median age atmarriage at Hyderabad District, however, for female population is 15.3 years which is the fifthlowest in India and about 69% of females are married below 18 years. Universe and Sampling:
 The present study focused on divorce cases under the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955 decided anddisposed of by the Legal Services Authority [Lok Adalats], and Family Court of Hyderabad as itsuniverse. A multi-stage sampling method is followed to select the sample. To begin with, the cases referredfor divorce to the Family Court of Hyderabad by the City Civil Court Legal Services Authority areselected where the decree of divorce is granted by the Family Court of Hyderabad. A sample of 57cases was selected by following the purposive sampling method. Once the cases are selected, theresidence of the women-divorcees is taken into consideration to select the sample at the secondstage. Data is collected from the women- divorcees residing at twin cities of Hyderabad andSecunderabad and the peri-urban zone surrounding the twin cities. A pre-tested interviewschedule is used to elicit information from the respondents. Data on age, education, occupation,caste status, monthly income, details of marriage, details of marital disharmony, introduction oflegal aspects of divorce and the personal experiences in this regard, post-divorce consequencesas decided by the courts, life of the divorcee after divorce, and remarriage are collected by usingthe schedule. In-depth interviews also were made with selected respondents, family counselors,lawyers and the members of Judiciary dealing with divorce cases. Socio-Economic Profile Of The Divorcee-Respondents: The data is collected from 57 women respondents. Information pertaining to the socio-economicand cultural background of the spouses is important in as much as it could be related to theirbehavior pertaining to marital dissolution. In the analysis of data some of the socio-economiccharacteristics were taken as important variables in the process of divorce. Age of the respondents is an important variable in the analysis of divorce. The largest group of therespondents (52.3%) belongs to the 26-35 years age group, followed by 42.3 per cent of therespondents falling in the 16-25 years age group. The data suggest that a majority of themarriages ends at young age. Education is another important variable associated with divorce. In tune with the generalperception that more number of divorces accompanies higher level of education of women, it isreported that women with higher education took recourse to divorce to end marital incompatibility.In Becker's theory of the union formation process it is argued that highly educated men tend tomarry highly educated women and less educated men tend to marry less educated women[Becker 1977]. Though a number of studies link high rates of divorce to higher level of education,the proposition in the-Indian context, is not irrefutable. Pothen [1986] was not certain whethereducation hinders or promotes the incidence of divorce among Hindus. She agreed that it is hardto predict the restraining or corrective influence of education on divorce. The present study showsthat, even though the percentage of those with college education is sizeable [55.8%] the analysisof data implies that higher level of education is not always accompanied by divorce. There is much relationship between occupation and marital and familial life. Burgess and Locke[1950; 634] observed that 'various studies seem to show that divorce is relatively high amongpersons engaged in occupations necessitating frequent absence from home, involving intimatecontacts with the opposite se, and controlled relatively little by the community'. The percentage ofwomen respondents working at the time of marriage and after is very low. The most important

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