ARTICLE: Profitable Proposals: Explaining and Addressing the Mail-Order Bride Industry Through International Human Rights Law Skip over navigation
LexisNexis® Browse Law Reviews and Treatises
Skip over navigation
Sign in with your® ID to access the full text of this article.
Order the full text of this article if you do not have a® ID.
US $22.00 (+ tax)

Copyright (c) 2004 San Diego International Law Journal 
San Diego International Law Journal

ARTICLE: Profitable Proposals: Explaining and Addressing the Mail-Order Bride Industry Through International Human Rights Law


5 San Diego Int'l L.J. 225




I. Introduction
American romantic mythology tells us that marriage is based on individualism, romantic love and partnership. 1 Flying in the face of these normative expectations, the modern mail-order bride industry 2 probably strikes a sour note with most Americans. What tradition presents as the ultimate personal decision, the industry seems to reduce to an impersonal economic exchange. Some critics accuse mail-order brides of marriage fraud, implying that they are not marrying for "the right reasons." 3 Others vilify mail-order brides as calculating gold-diggers. 4 Some feminist critics argue that mail-order marriages undermine the "transition from patriarchal to companionate family forms," 5 something these critics presume to be better for women.

The great sin of the mail-order bride industry (hereinafter MOBI) is not that it makes Western romantics uncomfortable. Whether the motivation to marry is romantic, economic, familial or socioeconomic, a marriage between two people who do not possess equal power risks abuse of the less powerful spouse. Arguably, to the extent women are generally subordinated by men, heterosexual marriage embodies this sort of power imbalance. The MOBI institutionalizes further power imbalances by deliberately matching men at the top of the global power spectrum with women who reside at the bottom.

These marriages, as well as the way mail-order bride businesses conduct their trade, violate women's human rights. To secure potential brides, the MOBI recruits women in developing nations who have been made vulnerable by daily violations of their human rights. Marriages resulting from the MOBI ...
If you are interested in obtaining a® ID and Password, please contact us at 1-(800)-227-4908 or visit us at
Search Documents
eg., Environmental Insurance Coverage Under the Comprehensive General Liability Policy

Lexis® Web - The only search engine that delivers free web content specifically from legal sites validated by LexisNexis® attorney editors and includes tools for faster research and more relevant results.

LexisNexis Store
Research Now - Go to
Connect the Dots - Free 1 hour webcast
Share. Network. Discover. - Go to LexisNexis Communities