16 February 2006

More Reports about Bride Kidnapping

Here is a new article about the divorces after bride kidnappings (see here, here, and here for other things I've written about it). There was an interesting statement partway through the article:

Studies show that the young generation is gradually changing its views on the tradition. Numerous young Kyrgyzes* changed their minds once they witnessed abduction of a bride or participated in it. Farida, a student of the local university, saw her friend abducted once. The girl was very bright and promising but the marriage she had never even considered forced her to abandon all plans for the future. "I had thought it very romantic once, like in movies," Farida said. "When I saw my friend abducted, however, I understood how horrible it was. I would not want it to happen to me."

This is the main reason why education is so important in stopping kidnappings. I've talked to young Kyrgyz women several times about kidnapping, and I did get the impression that there was some level of romanticism involved. Some girls seemed to think it would be exciting to be kidnapped, or a compliment. (Is anyone going to kidnap a girl they don't think is pretty?) Educating girls about the realities of kidnapping- the divorces, the end to any kind of formal education, possibly marrying someone you don't like or into a difficult family, etc- can help change attitudes.

*Is "Kyrgyzes" a word? I've never seen that one before.

1 comment:

  1. I've only ever heard "Kyrgyz" or even "kyrgyzstani" (but never in-country), even in the plural.
    I lived three years in KZ, in Bishkek, Tokmok, and Osh. Thanks for the blog and pics to feed my sentimentality.
    Ellen (USA)