I enjoyed John Gapper’s argument (“Parents find new ways to give their sweetheart honeymoon”, Opinion, FT Weekend, December 11) that an increasingly stratified west is finding ways to pay for desirable marriages – just like rural China, India or Jane Austen’s England. The French economist Thomas Piketty is surely an unrecognized inspiration here.
I am also reminded of the late David Graeber’s anthropological view of such practices, which is equally pervasive when opposed to Western and non-Western cultures.
However, Graeber would not have referred to the African Bantu “tribe”. Bantu people consist of an extensive family of ethno-linguistic groups that span the continent, and undoubtedly have all kinds of marital customs.
Seattle, WA, USA