man and woman holding hands

Should women stop taking their husband’s surname when married?


Read through the following text and look up any vocabulary you are not sure about before answering the questions.

Conversation Summary

In many western countries, particularly the UK ad the US, young women continue to take their husband’s surname when they get married. In the US around 70% and in the UK almost 90% of women take their husband’s surname.

Although taking the man’s surname is by no means compulsory, some find it surprising that women choose this option as historically it represented that the man now “owned” his wife.


  • Do women take the man’s surname in your country?
  • Do you think it is a tradition that shouldn’t continue?
  • Why do you think many women now choose to take the man’s surname?
  • Would you be in favour of a law preventing women from taking the man’s surname?
  • What potential problems can you see if women keep their original surname?

Key Vocabulary

  • Marriage noun
  • Couple noun
  • Surname noun
  • Marry verb
  • Be in favour idiom
  • Tradition idiom

Question Details


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