Education, more than wealth, determines women’s marital age

Source: The post is based on the article Education, more than wealth, determines women’s marital age published in The Hindu on 15th February 2023.

What is the News?

The Assam government is cracking down on child marriage and has registered over 4,000 cases just this year alone.

What are the factors that determine women’s marital age?

Education: Data from NFHS-5 show that the more educated a woman, the higher her negotiating power about when she wants to get married. 

– Interestingly, this is not a recent phenomenon. Data suggests that for decades now, better-educated women have had more of a say on when they should get married.

Wealth: Wealth has only recently gained relevance as a controlling factor in deciding a woman’s marital age.

– Among older generations, even wealthier families married women at a younger age.

Caste: The median marriage age among SC/ST/OBC women was below 20 even among younger generations, while that of non-SC/ST/OBC women crossed 20.

Location: The difference in the median marriage age between rural and urban women was wider among younger generations. 

– So, the negotiating power of urban women has improved at a higher pace than that of rural women.

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