by Emma Joanne Published 01/12/2016
We have all witnessed a refreshing DIY approach to weddings as displayed by couples married within the last six to seven years, which has spurned a trend towards placing a unique stamp on one's own prospective wedding day. Whether a themed wedding, relevant to a couple's interests or a clear jump onto the vintage bandwagon, it has been a welcome sight to see more creativity in this age-old ceremonial rite of passage, rather than prospective couples conveniently opting for the old-hat, pre-packaged wedding off the shelf.
But despite DIY flowers, bunting and personalised favours moving on from the formulaic, soulless, wedding paraphernalia, little has changed in the way of tradition and ceremony.
Thankfully leading the way towards change within US/UK marriage institutions are gay and transgender couples, who are thwarting tradition in many areas and re-writing the wedding protocol, rule by rule.
Until now gay couples have been given little option but to break away from the steadfast traditions and ceremonies seen in mainstream weddings, for the simple reason they are so gender biased. This in itself encourages a break from the protocol and one exciting aspect of these weddings is that there are no rules; couples are given free licence to break, bend and cast aside tradition, creating a ceremony and wedding day of their own devising, which represents them as a couple far more genuinely than referring to a list of ‘I do’s and don’ts.’
The Psychology and Symbolism of the White Wedding
In most cases a typical white heterosexual wedding is all to do with putting on a show of legal commitment in the most traditional, but patriarchal of ceremonies. The sexist undertones that make up the traditional wedding ceremony in the west are numerous and still largely accepted, as the correct ceremonial rite to marriage.
For example, it is still a largely respected tradition for the husband-to-be to ask the father of the bride for his daughter's hand in marriage; the father then traditionally walks his daughter down the aisle, only to physically and ceremoniously hand her over to her new husband.
This ritual is often followed by the father, groom and best man conducting the speeches at the wedding reception, whilst the bride sits mute and demure. The tradition of the bride taking the name of her new husband over her own is also prevalent in heterosexual weddings, which in turn relinquishes her own identity and places her out of the market to other men.
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