The Truth About Diamond Rings Value: Love or Money?

Now that you’re ready to tie the knot it’s time to buy a diamond engagement ring; but why do you go pay thousands of dollars for a ring that is “intrinsically worthless” (The Independent) as described by DeBeers diamond company’s president Nicky Oppenheimer. Why do men propose with diamond rings, and what does this say about the relationship between marriage and industry?

The Truth

The truth is that this tradition is anything but normal or ordinary and has only been around for about seventy years and was created as an advertising campaign; before that no one used diamonds and often proposals were given without any gift or object.

The Industry

The DeBeers diamond company is a current monopoly in the diamond industry. The company is able to control the price of diamonds and persuade the lower class buyers to listen and buy their products. In today’s market DeBeers has such large control on diamonds that they even halt the production of diamonds and restrict their output to retailers to create an artificial scarcity on what is already a scarce item.

What is the Value?

There are also arguments that could go against my research question as a whole. A popular belief is that engagement rings aren’t valued based off of their wealth but instead are viewed as a symbol of love. It has been proven that often beliefs and culture lead to rituals in a society. This can be applied to the use of diamond rings for proposals. Whether the use of diamond rings is a tradition because of the separation of classes, or if it is based off of beliefs and values, it is now a large part of today’s economy. A social stance can be taken to ask why the male buys the ring and proposes and that could lead to the use of feminism to answer this question. One could also ask what the diamond ring means as a symbol and view the questions through a psychological lens.


We wanted to know what others thought about this question. So, we went out and asked!


Created with images by AMagill - "Diamond ring" • Cooperweb - "Money" • MorganK - "question mark question why"

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