In contemporary societies religion has still a great influence on the culture and the way of organizing social life. Consequently family, its structure, norms, functions and roles are determined by the religion and its values. The paper presents the role of marriage in the Christian and Islamic societies. Whereas for Christians the celibate plays a key role as it is seen as the most desirable way of life, Islam religion does not recommend the state of womanlessness. However, the status of women in both Christian and Muslim families is shaped by patriarchal attitudes rooted in the social values. The authoress discusses pre-marital institution, e. g. an institution of 'mahr' - a gift of money or valuables given by the bride's family to that of the groom to permit their marriage which serves aftewards as a private savings of the wife in the case of divorce. Furthermore, she compares ways of upbringing of children and attitudes to divorce in both religions. Finally, she considers both religions similar in their concept of family due to their common judaic origin. (http://www.genderonline.cz/view.php?cisloclanku=2005120101)
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