Polygyny is the most common form of polygamy found around the world. Polygamy is broadly classified as marriage between an individual and multiple spouses; polygyny, however, is specifically concerned with the phenomenon of a man with multiple spouses. Taking an Arabic-Islamic perspective, this chapter presents an overview of the existing literature on women in polygynous marriages, with a specific focus on the association between marital status and mental health issues. It discusses reasons why men marry more than once, making reference to social pressures and the role of the Islamic faith. It also addresses the dynamics and impacts of the hierarchy of the different wives in a polygynous family, as well as the phenomenon of “First Wife Syndrome” which emerges from the practice of polygyny. Insights are also presented on the educational, social, and other challenges faced by children in the polygynous family structure. The chapter summarizes identified implications for mental health practice, along with suggestions for future lines of research.
|Title of host publication||Couple Relationships in a Global Context: Understanding Love and Intimacy Across Cultures|
|Editors||Angela Abela, Sue Vella, Suzanne Piscopo|
|Place of Publication||Cham|
|Publisher||Springer International Publishing AG|
|Number of pages||13|
|State||Published - 2020|