Child marriage: historical reality around the globe and in Bangladesh – A literature review
Child marriage, defined as marriage before 18 years, is a reality for more than 60 million women worldwide. This is more prevalent in developing countries including Bangladesh. Although the universal age for the marriage of women is 18 years, the girls get married earlier across different countries depending on the socio-cultural perspective. Globally child marriage is not uncommon even in this twenty first century; however, the phenomenon is concentrated in the developing countries, especially in Africa and South Asia. Currently Bangladesh is securing the 8th position among the highest burdened countries with child marriage. This literature review attempts to illuminate over the overall scenario of child marriage with special emphasis on Bangladesh situation. Besides, we also reviewed for drivers, consequences and legal aspects of child marriage. The evidences suggest that education, women empowerment and programmes involving the community stakeholders with bottom-up approach can be effective in preventing child marriage and can foster change relatively quickly.