In Algeria, as all Arab countries, society revolves around religion and the religious customs of Islam. Marriage in Algeria is taken very seriously and considered by must as sign of maturity. According to the Qur'an, marriage must be based upon love. Algeria's wedding customs are much the same as in other practicing Muslim communities. However the engagement in Algeria culture has a specific process. The first step of the engagement is choosing the marriage partner. Algerian men and woman are free to marry whoever they wish as long as the marriage partner is approved by the family. As soon as the man informs his mother that he wants to marry a certain woman, the mother will then set about investigating the woman and her family. If she is approved, the family will approach the woman's family to propose the union. A date will be chosen to visit the mosque so as the beginning of the engagement. The second step is the preparation which in the family will purchase household goods, clothes and gold. The is called Choura, and is given to the couple as a way to help them start their married life. Meanwhile the couple will spend much time together getting to know each other. This is important, as by Islamic law decisions are made jointly by husband and wife. Finally the last step is the preparation of the engagement ceremony. Food begins being prepared weeks before the day of the ceremony. The ceremony meal will include couscous, meat and vegetable along with dessert such as baklava. The more plentiful the food, the more generous the family is said to be. Meanwhile, the gusts will seat in a very decorated room and the bride will appear and is seated in front. She wears an intricate engagement gown and adorned with makeup, much jewelry and henna designs on her hands. A little later the groom dressed in ornate but traditional clothing joins her and sits next to her. They exchange the rings and enjoy the...
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