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Short essay on diversity in Indian Culture

SROUTI MODHA

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India is a land of diversity in race, region, caste, language, mate, landform, flora and fauna and so on. From ancient time till day India has repaintained this
diversity from very ancient time. Mature has shaped the country so. Rightly this land has been termed as "the epitome of the world." The fundamental
diversity in India is gleaned from the following.
Geographical Diversity:
India is a vast country with great diversity of physical features. Certain parts in India are so fertile that they are counted amongst the most fertile regions of
the world while other are so unproductive and barren that hardly anything car be grown there.
The regions of Indo- Gangetic Valley belong to the first category, while certain area of Rajasthan falls under the later category. From the point of view of
climate, there is sharp contrast. As Minoo Massami has said that, "India has every variety of climates from the blazing heat of the plains, as hot in places as
hottest Africa-Jacobabad in Sindh- to freezing point (the Arctic cold of the Himalayas).
The Himalayan ranges which are always covered with snow are very cold while the deserts of Rajasthan are well known for their heat. The country also does
not get uniform rainfall. There are certain areas like Cherapunji in Assam which get almost 460" of rain -fall per year which is considered to be world's
highest record on the other hand, Sindh and Rajasthan get hardly 3 inches of rainfall per - year. This variety in climate has also contributed to a variety of flora
and fauna. In fact, India possesses richest variety of plants and animals known in the world.
Racial Diversity:
India possesses a rich variety of races. In view of this variety Prof. V.A. Smith says, "From the human point of view India has been often described as an
ethnological Dr racial museum in which numberless races of mankind may be steadied."
"The vast population of India consists of the jungles tribe (Hence Bhils, Kols, Santhals), the Greeks, the Sakas, the Kushanas, the Hunas, the Mongolians, the
Arabs, the Turks, the Afghans etc. The physical features and color of the Indian people also differ from region to region- While the people of Kashmir are
handsome and fair in complexion, these qualities are missing among the habitants of Assam.
Linguistic Diversity:
India not only possesses racial diversity but also linguistic diversity- It is said that almost 400 languages are spoken in India. Some of the prominent
language recognized by the constitution includes, Assamese Bengali, Gujrkti, Hindi, Kannad, Kashmiri, and Malayalam. Marathi, Or Punjabi, Sanskrit,
Sindhi, Terrill, Telgu and Urdu. In fact it is commonly believed that in India the language changes after every four kooks. There is not only variety of
languages but also variety of scripts in India some of the popular scripts in ancient times were Pali, Kharosthi Devnagri, etc. What is really striking is that
almost all these language- possess their own literature which differ a great deal from each other
Religious and social Diversity:
In the religious sphere also India possesses great diversity. Almost all the principal religions of the world like Brahmanism, Buddhism, Jainism, Islam and
Christianity are found here. Most of these religions are further sub-divided into various sects and divisions.
For example, Buddhism is divided into Hinayana and Mahayana; the Jainism is divided into Digambaras and Septembers and the Brahmanism is divided
into the Vaishnavas, Shivas, Shaktis, Brahmo Samaj, Arya Samaj etc. In addition the primitive men have their own peculiar cults which are quite distinct
from these major religions. Thus we can say India possess completely diversity on religious sphere.
In the social sphere also the general customs and manners of the people greatly different. People of different regions use different types of dresses. Their
eating habits and customs are also quite different. Certain people are quite civilized while other are yet backward in their customs. Thus we find as
Radhakumud Mukherjee has put it, "India is a museum of cults and customs, creeds and cultures, faiths and tongues, racial types and social systems.
Political Diversity:
The diversity in culture, races, language, religion etc. greatly stood in the way of political unity in India. As a result from the earliest times, India has been
divided into several independent principalities. The rulers of these principalities were always engaged in wars with each other for supremacy. This disunity
and friction was fully exploited by the foreign invaders to bring India under their subjugation.
No doubt certain rulers like Chandra Gupta Maurya, Ashoka, Samudra Gupta, Ala- ud- din Khiliji and Akbar had subjugated these principalities and
established strong empire but they were only handful of the rulers who could accomplish it. For most of the time India presented the spectacle of a divided
country. Even under this mighty rulers a real unity could not be established both due to the lack of means of communication and transportation as well as
national consciousness. In short, we can say that really speaking India could never be united politically.
In this way diversity pervades on the whole of Indian subcontinent. This diversity is so much so that a foreigner will simply stare at this. Anyway, such
diversities are not the hallmarks of Indian culture. The main theme of this culture is unity which absorbs all the diversities.

Culture of India
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The culture of India is the way of living of the people of India. India's languages, religions,
dance, music, architecture, food, and customs differ from place to place within the country.
The Indian culture, often labelled as an amalgamation of several cultures, spans across the
Indian subcontinent and has been influenced by a history that is several millennia old.[1][2]
Many elements of India's diverse cultures, such as Indian religions, Indian philosophy and
Indian cuisine, have had a profound impact across the world.

Contents
[hide]

1 Culture

2 Religions
o 2.1 Philosophy

3 Family structure and marriage
o 3.1 Arranged marriage
o 3.2 Wedding rituals

4 Greetings

5 Festivals

6 Animals

7 Cuisine

8 Clothing

9 Languages and literature
o 9.1 History
o 9.2 Epics

10 Performing arts
o 10.1 Dance

o 10.2 Drama and theatre
o 10.3 Music

11 Visual arts
o 11.1 Painting
o 11.2 Sculpture
o 11.3 Architecture

12 Sports and martial arts
o 12.1 Sports
o 12.2 Indian martial arts

13 Popular media
o 13.1 Television
o 13.2 Cinema

14 Perceptions of Indian culture

15 See also

16 References

17 Further reading

18 External links

Culture[edit]
India is one of the world's oldest civilisations.[3] The Indian culture, often labeled as an
amalgamation of several various cultures, spans across the Indian subcontinent and has been
influenced and shaped by a history that is several thousand years old.[1][2] Throughout the
history of India, Indian culture has been heavily influenced by Dharmic religions.[4] They have
been credited with shaping much of Indian philosophy, literature, architecture, art and music.
[5]
Greater India was the historical extent of Indian culture beyond the Indian subcontinent.
This particularly concerns the spread of Hinduism, Buddhism, architecture, administration
and writing system from India to other parts of Asia through the Silk Road by the travellers
and maritime traders during the early centuries of the Common Era.[6][7] To the west, Greater
India overlaps with Greater Persia in the Hindu Kush and Pamir Mountains.[8] During the
medieval period, Islam played a significant role in shaping Indian cultural heritage[9] Over the

Jainism and Sikhism. such as Hinduism and Buddhism. Religion plays a central and definitive role in the life of many of its people.2%).[14][17] India is one of the most religiously diverse nations in the world.6 billion followers.7%) and Jainism (0. Christianity (2. Hinduism. Śraman ṇa. Sikhsim.5 or 2. Buddhism. Jainism. Islam.[14][15][16] and possibly as many as 2. with over 2 billion followers altogether. with some of the most deeply religious societies and cultures. there has been significant integration of Hindus. Hinduism and Buddhism are the world's third and fourth-largest religions respectively. are found in India. Jains.4%) are the other major religions followed by the people of India. Islam (14. are indigenous to India. India. 80% of the population of India practice Hinduism. though these have been affected by major religions such as . Christianity and Irreligion in India India is the birthplace of Hinduism.[12] Main articles: Religion in India. such as Sarnaism. Indian religions. Buddhism. collectively known as Indian religions. and Sikhs with Muslims across India[10][11] Religions[edit] Aarti ritual in Hindu worship Close-up of a statue depicting Maitreya at the Thikse Monastery in Ladakh.3%).[13] Indian religions are a major form of world religions along with Abrahamic ones.7%).centuries.[18] Many tribal religions. Today. Sikhism (1. Buddhism (0. According to the 2011 census.

[30][31] However. Buddhist."[35] Competition and integration between the various schools was intense during their formative years. Subsequent centuries produced commentaries and reformulations continuing up to as late as the 20th century who gave contemporary meaning to traditional philosophy.[24][25][26] India has produced some notable atheist politicians and social reformers.[29] The main schools of Indian philosophy were formalised chiefly between 1000 BCE to the early centuries of the Common Era. and the Bahá'í Faith are also influential but their numbers are smaller.[20][21] It is one of the earliest form of materialistic and atheistic movement in ancient India. According to philosopher Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan. the earliest of these. especially between 800 BCE and 200 CE.[22][23] Sramana. 3% were convinced atheists. there are other methods of classification.[32] Since medieval India (ca. they were either assimilated or went extinct. Judaism. Ram Mohan Roy. Some schools like Jainism. schools of Indian philosophical thought have been classified by the Brahmanical tradition[33][34] as either orthodox or non-orthodox – āstika or nāstika – depending on whether they regard the Vedas as an infallible source of knowledge. which date back to the composition of the Upanishads in the later Vedic period (1000–500 BCE). 81% of Indians were religious. Swami Dayananda Saraswati and among others. There are six schools of orthodox Hindu philosophy—Nyaya. Zoroastrianism. Some of them were Swami Vivekananda. did not.[19] Atheism and agnostics also have visible influence in India. Samkhya. Buddhism. The Cārvāka school originated in India around the 6th century BCE. Buddhism.[19] Jainism. Jainism. Ājīvika and some schools of Hinduism consider atheism to be valid and reject the concept of creator deity. .1000–1500).[19] Atheism and agnosticism have a long history in India and flourished within Śraman ṇa movement. Vidyaranya for instance identifies sixteen schools of Indian philosophy by including those that belong to the Śaiva and Raseśvara traditions. along with a self-ascribed tolerance to other faiths. Śaiva and Advaita Vedanta survived.[27] According to the 2012 WIN-Gallup Global Index of Religion and Atheism report. ritualism and superstitions.Hinduism. Ājīvika and Cārvāka – last two are also schools of Hinduism.[36] Family structure and marriage[edit] A bride during a traditional Hindu wedding ceremony in Punjab. Mīmāmṇsā and Vedanta—and four heterodox schools—Jain. and 3% were unsure or did not respond. Yoga. Islam and Christianity.[28][29] Philosophy[edit] Indian philosophy comprises the philosophical traditions of the Indian subcontinent. constitute "the earliest philosophical compositions of the world. Vaisheshika. 13% were not religious. Buddhism. but others. like Samkhya and Ājīvika.

[38] Youth in lower socio-economic classes are more inclined to spend time with their families than their peers due to differing ideologies in rural and urban parenting.[38][39] Sinha. children. arranged marriages have been the tradition in Indian society. Thereafter. – live together. [37] In a 1966 study. after summarising the numerous sociological studies done on Indian family. India has a prevailing tradition of the joint family system. about 7% of women got married before the age of 18. the dowry was considered a woman's share of the family wealth.[44] Historically. He finds that joint family still persists in some areas and in certain conditions. according to 2011 Census of India. Their studies suggest that Indian household sizes had remained similar over the 1911 to 1951 period. the oldest male member is the head in the joint Indian family system. and on average had lower per capita household income. It also typically included portable valuables such as jewelery and household goods that a bride could control throughout her life. the children's spouses and their offspring. India has witnessed a break up of traditional joint family into more nuclear-like families. He mostly makes all important decisions and rules. It is a system under which extended members of a family – parents.[45] Indians are increasingly using a legal will for inheritance and property succession. Usually. in part due to cultural traditions and in part due to practical factors.For generations. in most families the inheritance of family estates passed down the male line. the age of marriage was young. and other family members are likely abide by them. Even today. with urbanisation and economic development. with about 20 percent using a legal will by 2004. In the past. etc.[43] In some marriages the bride's family provide a dowry to the bridegroom. Indian laws treat males and females as equal in matters of inheritance without a legal will.[46] . since a daughter had no legal claim on her natal family's real estate. Orenstein and Micklin analysed India's population data and family structure. Traditionally. accounted for a small percent of Indian households.[41] The average age of marriage for women in India has increased to 21 years.[42] In 2009. notes that over the last 60 years. in his book. the majority of Indians have their marriages planned by their parents and other respected familymembers. in the 1990s. much like population trends in other parts of the world.[40] Arranged marriage[edit] Main articles: Arranged marriage and Women in India A bride in India. the cultural trend in most parts of India has been an accelerated change from joint family to nuclear families. For centuries. The traditional large joint family in India. Since 1956.

and Saptapadi. vivaha (wedding) is the most extensive personal ritual an adult Hindu undertakes in his or her life."[50] Recent studies suggest that Indian culture is trending away from traditional arranged marriages. the divorce rate is low — 1% compared with about 40% in the United States.In India.Kanyadaan. costumes and rituals that depend on the religion of the bride and the groom.[51] The study found that fewer marriages are purely arranged without consent and that the majority of surveyed Indian marriages are arranged with consent. While there are many festival-related rituals in Hinduism.[53] The nation celebrates about 10 million weddings per year. The bride and the groom are seated together. receiving instructions from the priest.554 households across 33 states and union territories in India in 2005. local adaptations.[47][48] These statistics do not reflect a complete picture. there are a few key rituals common in Hindu weddings .[55][56] Typical Hindu families spend significant effort and financial resources to prepare and celebrate weddings. and taking seven steps before fire with each step including a set of mutual vows. Banerjee et al. The percentage of self-arranged marriages (called love marriages in India) were also increasing. voluntarily holding hand near the fire to signify impending union.[54] of which over 80% are Hindu weddings. Sample surveys suggest the issues with marriages in India are similar to trends observed elsewhere in the world.[56][57][58] Sikhs get married through a ceremony called Anand Karaj. dance. The couple walk around the holy book.[52] Wedding rituals[edit] A Hindu wedding ritual in progress. surveyed 41. resources of the family and preferences of the bride and the groom. for some modernists. Indian Muslims celebrate a traditional Islamic wedding following customs similar to those practiced in the . Weddings are festive occasions in India with extensive decorations. the couple is legally husband and wife. they speak of a healthy new empowerment for women. The sacred square fire container (yajna kund) is behind the priest. gifting away of daughter by the father. the Guru Granth Sahib four times. Panigrahana. After the seventh step and vows of Saptapadi. The rituals and process of a Hindu wedding vary depending on region of India. Women initiate about 80 percent of divorces in India. Nevertheless. as well as their preferences. The divorce rates are rising in India. music. Japan and other nations. these are respectively.[49] "Opinion is divided over what the phenomenon means: for traditionalists the rising numbers portend the breakdown of society while. They find that the marriage trends in India are similar to trends observed over last 40 years in China. particularly in the urban parts of India. Urban divorce rates are much higher. though. colors. There is a dearth of scientific surveys or studies on Indian marriages where the perspectives of both husbands and wives were solicited in-depth.

"Jai Shri Krishna" (in Gujarati). and many continue to use this outside the Indian subcontinent.Middle East. younger men and women are taught to seek the blessing of their elders by reverentially bowing to their elders. R."[61][62] In most Indian families.[60] In Hinduism it means "I bow to the divine in you. The word is derived from Sanskrit (namah): to bow. The handshake is another common form of greeting. These traditional forms of greeting may be absent in the world of business and in India's urban environment. and respect. signing of marriage contract. the same hands folded gesture may be made wordlessly. It is commonly used in India and Nepal by Hindus. Namaste (Sanskrit). This custom is known as Pranāma. Namaskar is considered a slightly more formal version than Namaste but both express deep respect. Namaskar. payment of financial dower called Mahr by the groom to the bride. and Sat Shri Akal (Punjabi. reverential salutation. or said without the folded hand gesture. a common greeting used across the Jain community. Malayalam). "Ram Ram". Taken literally.[59] Indian Christian weddings follow customs similar to those practiced in the Christian countries in the West in states like Goa but have more Indian customs in other states. and a reception. Greetings[edit] Main article: Namaste Pressing hands together with a smile to greet Namaste . Juhar/Namaskar in Odia. Other greetings include "Jai Jagannath" in Odia Language. In Indian and Nepali culture. Vanakkam (Tamil). "Jai ambe". Nomoskar (Assamese) is a common spoken greeting or salutation when people meet or a form of farewell when they depart. Jains and Buddhists. "Jai Sri Ram" etc. However. The rituals include Nikah. used by followers of Sikhism). "Jai Bhim" used by Buddhist Converts in Maharashtra after B. Ambedkar and "Nama Shivaya". it means "I bow to you". Swagatam (Marathi) or Namaskara (Kannada) or Namaskaram (Telugu. and (te): "to you".Nomoshkaar (Bengali). the word is spoken at the beginning of written or verbal communication. Jai Jinendra. "Ami Aschi" (in Bengali).a common cultural practice in India.[63] Festivals[edit] . Namaskar (Hindi).

Durga Puja. A tug of war. With little lamps and lot of care. being a multi-cultural and multi-religious society. Indian New year festival are celebrated in different part of India with unique style in different times. celebrated by . Puthandu. Holi. which is celebrated by Hindus. Ganesh Chaturthi. It is a major Indian festival celebrated every spring. Sisters wish their brothers happiness and feed them sweets.With India's cultural diversity. Rakshabandhan. Diwali. celebrates holidays and festivals of various religions. one of the major festivals is Diwali. Several harvest festivals such as Sankranthi. Main article: Festivals in India India. many Indian states and regions have local festivals depending on prevalent religious and linguistic demographics. In addition. Bihu. and Buddh Purnima. Bhaiya-Dhuj and Raakhi is celebrated. Pongal and Raja sankaranti swinging festival "Nuakhai" are also fairly popular. the country has more festivals than there are days in a year. the "festival of colours". Certain festivals in India are celebrated by multiple religions. Popular religious festivals include the Hindu festivals of Navratri. the festival of lights. Above children enjoying Holi. Ratha-Yatra. Maha Shivratri. the Republic Day and the Gandhi Jayanti. The three national holidays in India. In other parts of India. the Independence Day. while brothers give gifts and promise to protect their sisters. In autumn. Ugadi. Gudhi Padwa. are celebrated with zeal and enthusiasm across India. Notable examples include Diwali. Vishu and Vishuva Sankranti are the New years festival of different part of India. Ugadi. Karthigai festival celebrates the bond between sisters and brothers in south India. Sikhs and Jains. at Pushkar Fair in Rajasthan. and Dussehra.

cows are revered in Hindu culture and feeding a cow is seen as an act of worship. Animal husbandry in India and Cattle in religion The varied and rich wildlife of India has had a profound impact on the region's popular culture. such as Arba'een. while other Indian groups are vehement that what kind of meat one eats ought to be a matter of personal choice in a democracy. With over 23 million Christians. Milad un Nabi. Some groups oppose the butchering of cows. Eid ul Fitr. the cow is regarded as a symbol of ahimsa (non-violence). Madhya Pradesh enacted a law in January 2012.[64] Regional and community fairs are also common and festive in India. See also: Wildlife of India. which is the easternmost state of India. [65] Animals[edit] Cows depicted in the decorated gopuram of the Kapaleeshwarar temple in Chennai. cow remains a divisive topic in India. Adding colours to the culture of India. the Dree Festival is one of the tribal festivals of India celebrated by the Apatanis of the Ziro valley of Arunachal Pradesh. Common name for wilderness in India is Jungle which was adopted by the British colonialists to the English language.[68] As of January 2012. Christianity is India's third largest religion. of which 17 million are Roman Catholics. Several states of India have passed laws to protect cows. Eid ul Adha-(Bakr Eid). Baisakhi are celebrated with full fanfare by Sikhs and Hindu.Buddhists. For example. such as Guru Nanak Jayanti. Pushkar fair is one of the world's largest markets and Sonepur mela is the largest livestock fair in Asia. Islam in India is the second largest religion with over 172 million Muslims. while many states have no restrictions on the production and consumption of beef. Muharram and Shab-e-Barat. Sikh Festivals. India's wildlife has been the subject of numerous other tales and fables such as the Panchatantra and the Jataka tales. The country celebrates Christmas and Good Friday as public holidays.[67] For this reason. according to India's 2011 census.[64] Some of the Indian states have declared regional holiday's for the particular regional popular festivals.[66] In Hinduism. mother goddess and bringer of good fortune and wealth.[18] The Islamic festivals which are observed and are declared public holiday in India are. Jumu'ah-tul-Wida and Shab-e-Qadar. India is home to many Christian festivals. namely the Gau-Vansh Vadh . The word has been also made famous in The Jungle Book by Rudyard Kipling.

Sociologists theorise that the widespread consumption of cow meat in India is because it is a far cheaper source of animal protein for the poor than lamb or chicken. ranging from very spicy to very mild. selling and transport of beef. varying with seasons in each region. While states such as Madhya Pradesh are passing local laws to prevent cruelty to cows. In southern Indian state Kerala. In contrast. such as vedic texts. do not prohibit its consumption. consumption of beef is not deemed an offence. A beef ban has been made in Maharashtra and other states as of 2015. which retail at double the price. other Indians are arguing "If the real objective is to prevent cruelty to animals. Odisha and Andhra Pradesh allow butchering of cattle with a fit-for-slaughter certificate. including Hindus. a sizeable number of Hindus eat beef.Pratishedh (Sanshodhan) Act. a western state of India. In the states of West Bengal and Kerala. These reflect the local agriculture. enacted in October 2011. that prohibits killing of cows along with buying. Contrary to stereotypes. which makes cow slaughter a serious offence. For these reasons. currently. then why single out the cow when hundreds of other animals are maltreated?"[69][70][71] Cuisine[edit] Main article: Indian cuisine Indian cuisine is diverse. India's beef consumption post-independence in 1947 has witnessed a much faster growth than any other kind of meat. regional climate. Gujarat. and many argue that their scriptures. for instance. India is one of the five largest producer and consumer of cattle livestock meat in the world. beef accounts for nearly half of all meat consumed by all communities. culinary innovations and cultural . has the Animal Preservation Act.

documents the fine art of making Kheer. There are lots of things to learn about the different cuisines . Chang notes that the importance of food in understanding human culture lies in its infinite variability . I don't think any cuisine in the world has got so many influences the way that Indian food has. innovate and develop sophisticated cuisines. Every region in the world has their own sense of how Indian food should be perceived.diversity. from vegetarian to meat. It's always inspirational. bread and a selection of sides. Cuisines become more than a source of nutrients. a favourite of many Michelin-starred chefs. to get quality milk. the first Indian to receive two Michelin stars[74] . deploy a wide range of food preparation styles. Indian food is a cosmopolitan cuisine that has so many ingredients. pay attention to what the cows eat. Indian food is as diverse as India.it just amazes me. I don't actually think that there is a single state in India that I haven't visited. writes "for sheer inventiveness with milk itself as the primary ingredient. from breads to desserts. a milk based dessert of India: Select the cows carefully. feed them sugar canes. It is a very rich cuisine and is very varied. I keep my mind open and like to explore different places and pick up different influences as I go along. From salads to sauces. no country on earth can match India.. For survival needs. Food in India is sometimes served in thali . Nimmatnama-i Nasiruddin-Shahi (Book of Recipes). people everywhere could eat the same and some simple food. Above are thali samples. art and expression of love.E.a plate with rice. There is so much to learn from India because each and every state is a country by itself and each has its own cuisine. experiment. use this milk to make the best Kheer. culture. " — Atul Kochhar. Food is an integral part of every human culture. cooking techniques and culinary presentation. from spices to sensuous. Kheer is a traditional Indian sweet dish. . Indian cuisine is invariably complex.[72] But human cultures. Harold McGee. over the ages..a variability that is not essential for species survival."[73] "I travel to India at least three to four times a year. they reflect human knowledge. written about 1500 C. Indian cuisines use numerous ingredients.

the most common cuisine served on the menu would be Punjabi cuisine (chicken tikka masala is a very popular dish in the United Kingdom). buffalo. planning and style of dining amongst other things. these crystals were called khanda (खणड). such as the Central Asians. which is the source of the word candy. Great thought was given to the texture and taste of each dish.[78] India is known for its love for food and spices. Fish-based cuisines are common in eastern states of India.[80] In most Indian restaurants outside India. various methods of cooking.[79] Despite this diversity. and north-eastern. southern. goat. Mughals. people in India had developed the technology to produce sugar crystals."[77] One such historical record is Mānasollāsa." — Harold McGee. beef. Historically. the feel of various foods. who was Indian and lived in England. a wide assortment of recipes and cooking techniques. and varied demographics of the country. when the grandmother I hadn't yet met. Arabs. author of On Food and Cooking[75] Some Indian confectionery desserts from hundreds of varieties. Though a significant portion of Indian food is vegetarian. you will notice how much attention was paid to the planning and cooking of a meal. Generally. Varied uses of spices are an integral part of certain food preparations. eastern. Indian cuisine can be split into five categories . many traditional Indian dishes also include chicken. although these are few and far between. and are used to enhance the flavour of a dish and create unique flavours and aromas.northern. There do exist some restaurants serving cuisines from other regions of India. "if you looked back in India's history and study the food that our ancestors ate. written in the 12th century. In certain parts of India. particularly West Bengal. the best blend of flavours.. The spice trade between India and Europe led to the rise and dominance of . (Sanskrit: ममानससोल्लमास. a member of Singapore Airlines' International Culinary Panel.". Indian cuisine varies from region to region. lamb. Indian cuisine is one of the most popular cuisines across the globe. Cuisine across India has also been influenced by various cultural groups that entered India throughout history. Sugar and desserts have a long history in India: by about 500 BCE. The Delight of Mind). Kapoor claims.[76] According to Sanjeev Kapoor.. In the local language. some unifying threads emerge. these are called mithai or sweets. For me it still carries the taste of strangeness and confusion and wonder. reflecting the local produce. and other meats. fish. and European colonists. The diversity of Indian cuisine is characterised by differing use of many spices and herbs. western. the menu does not do justice to the enormous variety of Indian cuisine available . Indian spices and herbs were one of the most sought after trade commodities. sent me a box. The book describes the need to change cuisine and food with seasons. it takes me back to the first Christmas I can remember. Indian food has long been an expression of world cuisine. cultural diversity.

[81] The popularity of curry.[82] Regional Indian cuisine continues to evolve. Gagra Choli and Shalwar Kameez worn by women in India.Arab traders to such an extent that European explorers. Illustration of different styles of Sari. across Asia has often led to the dish being labeled as the "pan-Asian" dish. A fusion of East Asian and Western cooking methods with traditional cuisines. . such as Vasco da Gama and Christopher Columbus. which originated in India. along with regional adaptations of fast food are prominent in major Indian cities. set out to find new trade routes with India leading to the Age of Discovery.[83] Clothing[edit] Main article: Clothing in India Punjabi woman dressed traditionally for 'Teej' festival.

Traditionally. Indian dress etiquette discourages exposure of skin and wearing transparent or tight clothes.[90] Stitched clothing in India was developed before the 10th century CE and was further popularised in the 15th century by Muslim empires in India. trousers.[86] Since India's weather is mostly hot and rainy. suits. Some women wear sindoor . silver or other regional stones and gems. Indian independence movement leader Mahatma Gandhi successfully advocated for what he termed as khadi clothing — light coloured hand-woven clothes — so as to decrease the reliance of the Indian people on British industrial goods. muslins manufactured in southern India were imported by the Roman Empire and silk cloth was one of the major exports of ancient India along with Indian spices. shirts.[87] Indian women perfect their sense of charm and fashion with make up and ornaments. increasing involvement of women in the fashion industry and changing Indian attitudes towards multiculturalism. neither do over 1 million Indian women from religions other than Hindu and agnostics/atheists who may be married. Greek historian Herodotus describes the richness of the quality of Indian cotton clothes. In public and religious places. Single Hindu women do not wear sindoor. Salwar is often loose fitting. majority of Indians wear sandals.[88] In 5th century BCE. while churidar is a tighter cut. Worn on their forehead.[91] During the British Raj. bangles and other jewelry are common.[90] Draped clothing styles remained popular with India's Hindu population while the Muslims increasingly adopted tailored garments. kurtas and variety of other fashions. Consequently.[84] For men. India's large clothing and handicrafts industry was left paralysed so as to make place for British industrial cloth. some consider the bindi as an auspicious mark.Traditional clothing in India greatly varies across different parts of the country and is influenced by local culture. climate and rural/urban settings. Bindi. earrings. In urban centres. Popular styles of dress include draped garments such as sari for women and dhoti or lungi or panche (in Kannada) for men. On special occasions. women may wear cheerful colours with various ornaments made with gold. such as marriage ceremonies and festivals.[84] India's clothing styles have continuously evolved over the course of the country's history. people can often be seen in jeans.[85] Most Indian clothes are made from cotton which is ideal for the region's hot weather. with dupatta (long scarf) thrown over shoulder completing the outfit. but now all colours and glitter has become a part of women's fashion. stitched versions include kurtapyjama and European-style trousers and shirts for men. Stitched clothes are also popular such as churidar or salwar-kameez for women.[89] By the 2nd century AD. Bindi is often an essential part of a Hindu woman's make up. Sindoor is the traditional mark of a married woman for Hindus. geography. The 11th-century BCE Rig-veda mentions dyed and embroidered garments (known as paridhan and pesas respectively) and thus highlights the development of sophisticated garment manufacturing techniques during this period.[92] The 1980s were marked by a widespread modification to Indian clothing fashions which was characterised by a large-scale growth of fashion schools in India.[93] . the red bindi was worn only by married Hindu women. mehendi. and coloured bindi was worn by single women.a traditional red or orange-red powder (vermilion) in the parting of their hair (locally called mang). These developments played a pivotal role in the fusion of Indian and Western clothing styles.

devamṇ .1. The 2001 census of India found 122 first languages in active use.1. Rigveda (padapatha) manuscript in Devanagari. The second map shows the distribution of the Indo-European languages throughout the world. The Vedic accent is marked ṇ by underscores and vertical overscores in red. Aum(3) . ileṇ . . India has 22 official languages – 15 of which are Indo-European. early 19th century.. rtvijamṇ ). yajñasya .").Languages and literature[edit] Main article: Indian literature History[edit] Language families in India and its neighbouring countries..1 (agnimṇ . purah ṇ-hitamṇ . the first line has the opening words of RV. After a scribal benediction ("śrīgan ṇéśāyanamah ṇ .

is of a wonderful structure. more copious than the Latin. yet bearing to both of them a stronger affinity. Numerous words from India entered English vocabulary during the British colonial era. bungalow and shampoo. Spanish. perhaps.. more perfect than the Greek. This inscription is from Indian emperor Ashoka. The Sanskrit language. Italian. whatever be its antiquity. bangles. and more exquisitely refined than either. to the classical languages of Europe. French. had the same origin with the Sanskrit . Celtic. for supposing that both the Gothic and the Celtic. Greek. carved in stone about 250 BCE. which. The discovery of Sanskrit by early European explorers of India led to the development of comparative Philology. both in the roots of verbs and the forms of grammar. Persian. and one of the earliest attested members of the Indo-European language family. German. without believing them to have sprung from some common source. Inscriptions are in Greek and Aramaic. Armenian. both in grammar and vocabulary. Baltic. Intensive scientific studies that followed have established that Sanskrit and many Indian derivative languages belong to the family which includes English. there is a similar reason. as the doctrine of Eusebeia .. though blended with a very different idiom. Tocharian and other Indo-European languages. no longer exists. than could possibly have been produced by accident. so strong indeed.spiritual maturity. that no philologer could examine them all three.[97] The evolution of language within India may be distinguished over three periods: old.[94][95] Examples: bandana. though not quite so forcible. The scholars of the 18th century were struck by the far reaching similarity of Sanskrit. The classical form of old Indo-Aryan was sanskrit meaning . found in Afghanistan. middle and modern Indo-Aryan. with ideas of non-violence against men and all living beings. — Sir William Jones. 1786[96] The Rigvedic Sanskrit is one of the oldest attestations of any Indo-Aryan language.Literary records suggest India had interacted in languages of other ancient civilisations.

when spoken colloquially. cultivated and correct. has also been significantly influenced by Sanskrit. Tamil. an original language alters into descendant languages that are now barely recognisable as the same. Thus we have in India three thousand years of continuous linguistic history recorded and preserved in literary documents. written in a Telugu script adapted from the Bhattiprolu script of the early inscriptions. It is Apabhramsa. Malayalam and Kannada. or indirectly via middle IndoAryan languages (tadbhava words). east and west. the Bengali language arose from the eastern Middle Indic languages and its roots are traced to the 5th-century BCE Ardhamagadhi language. Munda languages and Dravidian languages.polished. have borrowed many words either directly from Sanskrit (tatsama words). the Satavahana and Kadamba periods and hence has a history of over 2000 years. Tamil. descends from South-Central Dravidian language spoken around the third millennium BCE in all over south India. Early inscriptions date from 620 AD and literary texts from the 11th century. the structure of language changing as those masses mingled. and literary Old Kannada flourished in the 9th. all modern Indo-Aryan languages.[103] Telugu. In addition. India's most spoken language. Mutual intelligibility decreases. All of these Indian languages have roots and structure similar to Sanskrit. one of India's major classical language. descends from Proto-Dravidian languages spoken around the third millennium BCE in peninsular India. settled new lands and adopted words from people of other native languages.[98] Words originating in Sanskrit are estimated to constitute roughly fifty percent of the vocabulary of modern Indo-Aryan languages. The main difference between the two is that Hindi is generally written in the Devanagari script. Prakrit (the language of Jain philosophers) and Apabhramsa (the language blend at the final stage of middle Indo-Aryan).to 10th-century Rashtrakuta Dynasty. to each other and to other IndoEuropean languages.[97] that flowered into Hindi. some believe it to be even older than Tamil due to the existence of words which have more primitive forms than in Tamil.[97] Sanskrit has had a profound impact on the languages and literature of India. however. Gujarati. This enables scholars to follow language evolution and observe how. Kannada is attested epigraphically from the mid-1st millennium AD.the practical language of the migrating masses evolving without concern to proper pronunciation or grammar. is a "Sanskritised register" of the Khariboli dialect. Bengali. Prakrita became middle Indo-Aryan leading to Pali (the language of early Buddhists and Ashoka era in 200-300 BCE).[104][105][106][107] The . although to a slightly smaller extent.[100][101] Hindi is mutually intelligible with Urdu.[98] Part of the Eastern IndoAryan languages. Punjabi and many other languages now in use in India's north.[99] and the literary forms of (Dravidian) Telugu. whilst Urdu is written in Nastaliq. whilst Hindi has done so from Sanskrit and English. Another major Classical Dravidian language. As a spoken language. by changes hardly noticeable from generation to generation. The earliest inscriptions of Tamil have been found on pottery dating back to 500 BC. both languages being standardised registers of Hindustani. scholars claim. in specialised contexts where Urdu has borrowed words from Persian and Arabic. Hindi. Tamil literature has existed for over two thousand years[102] and the earliest epigraphic records found date from around the 3rd century BCE. one of India's major classical language. in distinction to Prakrit . Urdu is generally associated with South Asian Muslims. both are mutually intelligible. but. Marathi. Pre-old Kannada (or Purava HazheGannada) was the language of Banavasi in the early Common Era.

Genomic studies of ethnic groups in India suggests the AustroAsiatic tribals were likely the earliest settlers in India. Nishi). Tamil and Urdu. and Tamil.[120] Other regional variations of these. This epic played a pivotal role in establishing the role of dhárma as a principal ideal guiding force for Hindu way of life. followed by Bengali. Marathi. whose wife Sita is abducted by the demon king of Lanka. Austro-Asiatic and Tibeto-Burman languages are in use in India. Hindi Ramacharitamanasa. Telugu.g. six in Hindi. Ravana. According to the 2001 and 2011 India census.[109] It is also one of the 22 official languages in the 8th schedule of Indian constitution. five in Bengali.[117] In contemporary Indian literature.[108] Odia is India's 6th classical language in addition to Sanskrit. Oriya's importance to Indian culture. these are the Sahitya Akademi Fellowship and the Jnanpith Award. Eight Jnanpith awards have been awarded in Kannada. and Malayalam Adhyathmaramayanam.g. Telugu. Tamil. along with tribal populations of Tibeto-Burman origins. The Ramayana consists of 24.[119] The earliest parts of the Mahabharata text date to 400 BC[119] and is estimated to have reached its final form by the early Gupta period (c. as well as unrelated epics include the Tamil Ramavataram. Epics[edit] The Rāmāyan ṇa and the Mahābhārata are the oldest preserved and well-known epics of India. there are two major literary awards. is evidenced by its presence in Ashoka's Rock Edict X at Kalsi palitiditu (Dhauli.Ashoka rock edict found at Brahmagiri (dated 230 BCE) has been suggested to contain a word in identifiable Kannada. Hindi is the most spoken language in India. Genome studies of Fst distances suggest the northeastern Himalayas acted as a barrier. Gujarati. four in Odia and Malayalam. long ago. Kannada and Malayalam.[112][113] [114][115][116] Manuscript illustration of the Battle of Kurukshetra. Jaugada palitiditu).[110][111] In addition to Indo-European and Dravidian languages. Languages spoken in this part of India include Austro-Asiatic (e. Khasi) and Tibeto-Burman (e. the genome studies suggest a major wave of humans possibly entered India. there are five major epics . In addition to these two great Indian epics. Versions have been adopted as the epics of Southeast Asian countries like Philippines. from ancient times. through the northeast. Malaysia and Indonesia. three each in Marathi. 4th century AD). dated to be from 2nd century BC. Kannada Pampa Bharata. Urdu and Telugu and two each in Assamese.000 verses in seven books (kān ṇd ṇas) and 500 cantos (sargas). Thailand. in the last 5000 years.[118] and tells the story of Rama (an incarnation or Avatar of the Hindu preserver-god Vishnu). to human migration as well as to admixing. India's language and cultural fusion is not only because of large migrations of Indo-Aryans from central Asia and west Eurasia through the northwest.

Bhangra folk dance.in the classical Tamil language — Silappatikaram. . Manimekalai. Performing arts[edit] Kuchipudi Odissi dance. Civaka-cintamani and Valayapathi-kundalakesi.

Gotipua. The Kanchi or the waist cloth has the traditional Miri motif. Indian regions have a strong free form. and Drama are: bharatanatyam of the state of Tamil Nadu. the jat-jatin. yakshagana of Karnataka. ननटट) be the fifth vedic scripture. each gesture seeks to communicate the ideas. the qauwwalis. both estimated to be between 1700 and 2200 years old. the kolattam of Andhra Pradesh. nothing is left to chance. according to Ragini Devi. birhas and charkulas of Uttar Pradesh. Dhulbiri. Nātyaśāstra (Science of Dance) and Abhinaya Darpana (Mirror of Gesture) are two surviving Sanskrit documents. Recent developments include adoption of international dance . kuchipudi of Andhra Pradesh.[124][125] In addition to the formal arts of dance. the bihu of Assam. Some of the folk dances include the bhangra of Punjab. tending to virtue.Dekhnni of Goa. each facial expression the emotions. Jethipata and Bena (necklaces).Dance[edit] Main article: Dance in India Let drama and dance (Nātya. the Ghumura Dance. Mahari dance and Dalkhai of Odisha.[123] It is a deliberate art. kathak of Uttar Pradesh. it must contain the significance of every scripture. sometime between 200BC . folksy dance tradition. nat-natin and saturi of Bihar. — First chapter of Nātyaśāstra. kathakali and mohiniattam of Kerala. Dance.[122] The Indian art of dance as taught in these ancient books. India has had a long romance with the art of dance. many in narrative forms with mythological elements. Muthi Kharu (bracelets). the zeliang of Nagaland. the dandiya and garba of Gujarat. wealth.200AD[121][122] Sattriya dancer Krishnakshi Kashyap in a traditional Sattriya dance costume made of Assam Pat silk and traditional Assamese jewellery: Kopali on the forehead. Thuka Suna (earrings) and Galpata. the chhau of Jharkhand and Bengal. Indian dance includes eight classical dance forms. the ghoomar of Rajasthan. and forward every art. joy and spiritual freedom. Combined with an epic story. The eight classical forms accorded classical dance status by India's National Academy of Music. Traditional Kingkhap motif is used in the main costume with Kesh pattern on the border. lavani of Maharashtra. odissi (orissi) of the state of Odisha and the sattriya of Assam. is the expression of inner beauty and the divine in man. the yakshagana of Karnataka . manipuri of Manipur.

It strictly follows the Natya Shastra. following those of Bhasa. One of the oldest surviving theatre traditions of the world is the 2. Harsha's Nagananda.[127] Nātyāchārya Māni Mādhava Chākyār is credited for reviving the age old drama tradition from extinction. Vikramorvaśīya and Mālavikāgnimitra. Bhasa's Swapnavāsavadatta and Pancharātra. Kalidasa's plays like Shakuntala and Meghadoota are some of the older dramas. to tell stories from the Bible. He was known for mastery of Rasa Abhinaya. He started to perform the Kalidasa plays like Abhijñānaśākuntala.[128][129] Music[edit] .[126] Drama and theatre[edit] Main article: Theatre in India Indian drama and theatre has a long history alongside its music and dance.forms particularly in the urban centres of India. and the extension of Indian classical dance arts by the Kerala Christian community.000-year-old Kutiyattam of Kerala.

[132] It proposed a tonal structure consisting of seven notes. Main article: Music of India Music is an integral part of India's culture.Images of musical instruments drawn by Pierre Sonnerat.[135] Visual arts[edit] Main article: Indian art Painting[edit] Main article: Indian painting . which were named. cymbals.[130] One of these ancient Indian systems classifies musical instruments into four groups according to four primary sources of vibration: strings. These refer to the notes of a flute. this is the earliest account of Indian musical hymns. Pratham. Archeologists have also reported the discovery of a 3000-year-old. Tritiya. heavily influenced India's classical music tradition. 20-key. folk. sung to a rhythmic cycle (known as Tāla). Filmi refers to the wide range of music written and performed for mainstream Indian cinema. and accounts for more than 70 percent of all music sales in the country.[131] The oldest preserved examples of Indian music are the melodies of the Samaveda (1000 BC) that are still sung in certain Vedic Śrauta sacrifices. Both the Carnatic music and Hindustani music systems are based on the melodic base (known as Rāga). Prominent contemporary Indian musical forms included filmi and Indipop. carefully shaped polished basalt lithophone in the highlands of Odisha. a 2000-year-old Sanskrit text. The Samaveda. Natyasastra. primarily Bollywood. these principles were refined in the nātyaśāstra (200 BC) and the dattilam (300 AD). and other Hindu texts. classical. and air. in descending order. Mandra and Atiswār. classical or Sufi music with Western musical traditions. popular and pop music.[134] Indipop is one of the most popular contemporary styles of Indian music which is either a fusion of Indian folk. According to Reis Flora. describes five systems of taxonomy to classify musical instruments. Dwitiya. membranes. the French explorer. in 1782 during his voyage through India.[133] The current music of India includes multiple varieties of religious. as Krusht. which was the only fixed frequency instrument. which is known today in two distinct styles: Carnatic and Hindustani music. this is similar to the Western theory of organology. Chaturth.

where stone and bronze figures have been discovered. Later. Rajput painting.The Jataka tales from Ajanta Caves. Jamini Roy and B. Marble Sculpture of female. Raza. while Nandalal Bose. Atul Dodiya. S. These recent artists have acquired international recognition. Raja Ravi Varma is one of the classical painters from medieval India. Mumbai. Sculpture[edit] The 5th-century Buddhist vishvakarma cave at Ellora. Mysore painting. Buddhist or Jain. Mughal painting are some notable Genres of Indian Art. A freshly made coloured floor design (Rangoli) is still a common sight outside the doorstep of many (mostly South Indian) Indian homes. c. such as the one at Ellora were not constructed by using blocks but carved out of solid rock. Buddhism. Among the present day artists. and Jainism developed further. Rajasthan Main article: Sculpture in India The first sculptures in India date back to the Indus Valley civilisation. Some huge shrines. . Most early and medieval art in India is Hindu. Pattachitra. Cave paintings from Ajanta. Jehangir Art Gallery. Bagh. Tanjore painting. M. Geeta Vadhera. Mysore Palace has on display a few good Indian paintings. as Hinduism. India produced some extremely intricate bronzes as well as temple carvings. F. Maharashtra. Madhubani painting. Bose Krishnamacnahri. 1450. Husain. Ellora and Sittanavasal and temple paintings testify to a love of naturalism. Venkatappa[136] are some modern painters. H. Devajyoti Ray and Shibu Natesan represent a new era of Indian art where global art shows direct amalgamation with Indian classical styles.

[138] During the period of the Mauryan and Gupta empires and their successors. South India produced several Hindu temples like Chennakesava Temple at Belur. One of the world's seven wonders. Thanjavur built by Raja Raja Chola. schist. is one of many World Heritage Sites in India. The pink sandstone sculptures of Mathura evolved almost simultaneously. Konark.Sculptures produced in the northwest. These styles and others elsewhere in India evolved leading to classical Indian art that contributed to Buddhist and Hindu sculpture throughout Southeast Central and East Asia. Sri Ranganathaswamy Temple at Srirangam. During the Gupta period (4th to 6th centuries) sculpture reached a very high standard in execution and delicacy in modeling. and the Buddha stupa (Chinna Lanja dibba and Vikramarka kota dibba) at Bhattiprolu. display a very strong blend of Indian and Classical Hellenistic or possibly even Greco-Roman influence. Brihadeeswara Temple. Later on. The result is an evolving range of architectural production that nonetheless retains a certain amount of continuity across history.[137] the Taj Mahal in Agra is a prime example of Indo-Islamic architecture. and the Kesava Temple at Somanathapura. as they are built in styles almost identical to traditional Indian religious buildings. the Hoysaleswara Temple at Halebidu. Angkor Wat. Borobudur and other Buddhist and Hindu temples indicate strong Indian influence on South East Asian architecture. Religion and kingship do not seem to have played an important role in the planning and layout of these towns. or clay. constantly absorbing new ideas. in stucco. Indian architecture encompasses a multitude of expressions over space and time. the Sun Temple. such as the caves of Ajanta and Ellora and the monumental Sanchi Stupa were built. . Some of its earliest production are found in the Indus Valley Civilisation (2600–1900 BC) which is characterised by well planned cities and houses. several Buddhist architectural complexes. Architecture[edit] Main article: Architecture of India Considered to be an "unrivaled architectural wonder". The Konark Sun Temple in Odisha.

The colonial rule of the British Empire saw the development of Indo-Saracenic style. Gol Gumbaz. Fatehpur Sikri. etc. Qutub Minar. Feng Shui is more commonly used throughout the world. temple spire or shikhara. With the advent of Islamic influence from the west. such as European Gothic. are to be placed. influencing town planning. Recent creations such as the Lotus Temple. (also called life-force or Prana in Sanskrit and Chi/Ki in Chinese/Japanese). one of the largest private residences in the world. such as the exact directions in which various objects. Mumbai's Nariman Point is famous for its Art Deco buildings. Contemporary Indian architecture is more cosmopolitan. Indian architecture was adapted to allow the traditions of the new religion. The Victoria Memorial or the Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus are notable examples. architecture. Taj Mahal.The Umaid Bhawan Palace in Jodhpur. due to the spread of Buddhism. used extensively in East Asia and South East Asia. but they contain certain similarities. and are often used as the stereotypical symbols of India.[139] The traditional system of Vaastu Shastra serves as India's version of Feng Shui. and the various modern urban developments of India like Bhubaneswar and Chandigarh. Red Fort of Delhi are creations of this era. Indian architecture has influenced eastern and southeastern Asia.. It is unclear which system is older. or gopuram is noted for its intricacy and majesty. The Victoria Memorial in Kolkata illuminated at night. and ergonomics. A number of Indian architectural features such as the temple mound or stupa. The southern temple gate. Though Vastu is conceptually similar to Feng Shui in that it also tries to harmonise the flow of energy. and mixing of several other styles. through the house. Sports and martial arts[edit] . have become famous symbols of Asian culture. Cities are extremely compact and densely populated. are notable. it differs in the details. The central spire is also sometimes called a vimanam. rooms. materials. temple tower or pagoda and temple gate or torana.

However. Patañjali. the Deodhar Trophy. Salt Lake Stadium. the Duleep Trophy. The annual Snake boat race is performed during Onam Celebrations on the Pamba River at Aranmula near Pathanamthitta. The city of joy is a centre of football activity in India and is home to top national .Sports[edit] Cricket was introduced to India by the British.[140][141] India's cultural journey with yoga is now popular in many parts of the world. Main article: Sports in India Field hockey is the official national sport in India. the 2013 ICC Champions Trophy and shared the 2002 ICC Champions Trophy with Sri Lanka. the India national field hockey team won the 1975 Men's Hockey World Cup. and the second largest stadium in the world by capacity. The city of Kolkata is the home to the largest stadium in India. India hosted its first Formula One Grand Prix event. In 2011. reflect upon. in India's ancient books. BCCI conducts the Indian Premier League. Domestic competitions include the Ranji Trophy. Now it is the country's most popular sport. a Twenty20 competition. Yoga originated in India. the Irani Trophy and the Challenger Series.[142] The India national cricket team won the 1983 Cricket World Cup. 1 silver.[143] Cricket is considered the most popular sport in India. the 2007 ICC World Twenty20. field hockey in India no longer has the following that it once did. the 2011 Cricket World Cup. Football is popular in the Indian state of West Bengal. and 2 bronze medals at the Olympic Games. know and express one's highest self. suggests yoga's goal is to help one focus.[142][143] At a time when it was especially popular. In addition. and 8 gold.

the Rāmāyan ṇa and Mahābhārata. and other weapons. A distinctive factor of Indian martial arts is the heavy emphasis laid on meditation (dhyāna) as a tool to remove fear.. and Kho kho. In 2011.[145][146][147][148] where its early form in the 6th century was known as chaturanga.C. which was later used in martial arts. soldiers from southern India received special martial arts training which revolved primarily around the use of spear (vel). Today's paika akhada teach physical exercises and martial arts in addition to the paika dance.14-kilometre circuit is in Greater Noida. various stages of physical training include ayurvedic massage with sesame oil to impart suppleness to the body (uzichil). This ancient fighting style originated in southern India in the 12th century BCE and is regarded as one of the oldest surviving martial arts. These elements of yoga.[144] Chess is commonly believed to have originated in northwestern India during the Gupta empire.[156] Indian martial arts techniques have had a profound impact on other martial arts styles across Asia. while various mudra finger movements were taught in Yogacara Buddhism. sticks. traces its roots to the Sangam period in southern India. sword (val) and shield (kedaham). Other games which originated in India and continue to remain popular in wide parts of northern India include Kabaddi.C. The Dhanur Veda was first described in the 5th-century BCE Vis ṇn ṇu Purān [151] ṇa and is also mentioned in both of the major ancient Indian epics. were later incorporated into various martial arts.. and the Mohammedan Sporting Club. Prayag United S. India inaugurated a privately built Buddh International Circuit.[157] . these were training schools of the peasant militia. Traditional southern Indian games include Snake boat race and Kuttiyum kolum. Paika akhada is a martial art found in Odisha. Uttar Pradesh.. In northern India. a performance art with rhythmic movements and weapons being hit in time to the drum. as well as finger movements in the nata dances. which was developed around 200 AD. patta (guantlet-sword). complex sword fighting techniques (paliyankam).[152] The ancient Tamil Sangam literature mentions that between 400 BCE and 600 CE. physical and spiritual training.[152] Silambam is unique among Indian martial arts because it uses complex footwork techniques (kaaladi). Paika akhada. A bamboo staff is used as the main weapon. Kingfisher East Bengal F.[153] Among eastern states. The first Formula One Indian Grand Prix event was hosted here in October 2011.[citation needed] Silambam. It incorporates acrobatic maneuvres and use of the khanda (straight sword).clubs such as Mohun Bagan A. the Dhanur Veda tradition was an influential fighting arts style which considered the bow and the arrow to be the supreme weapons. its first motor racing circuit. near Delhi. a series of sharp body movements so as to gain control over various parts of the body (miapayattu). The 3rd-century BCE Yoga Sutras of Patanjali taught how to meditate single-mindedly on points located inside one's body.[155] In addition. The 5. and. the musti yuddha evolved in 1100 AD and focussed on mental. or paika akhara. doubt and anxiety. roughly translates as "warrior gymnasium" or "warrior school".C. Gilli-danda.[151] In this form martial arts.[154] In ancient times.[149][150] Indian martial arts[edit] Main article: Indian martial arts One of the best known forms of ancient Indian martial arts is the Kalarippayattu from Kerala. including a variety of spinning styles.

which was government owned. TV soaps are extremely popular with housewives as well as working women. with the New Delhi Asian games. Kannada. Indian small screen is a huge industry by itself. Cinema[edit] Main article: Cinema of India Bollywood is the informal name given to the popular Mumbai-based film industry in India. that year. Nickelodeon. Both channels were broadcast terrestrially. there has been a spurt in the number of channels available. Hence the government opened up another channel which had part national programming and part regional. Punjabi and Telugu) constitute the broader Indian film industry. Tamil. television programming had reached saturation. Indian TV now has many of the same channels as Western TV. This channel was known as DD 2 later DD Metro. India saw the colour version of TV. In 1991. the government liberated its markets. Since then. and MTV India. Bollywood and the other major cinematic hubs (in Bengali Cinema. 1982 saw revolution in TV programming in India. Malayalam. HBO. The small screen has produced numerous celebrities of their own kind some even attaining national fame for themselves. The Ramayana and Mahabharat were some among the popular television series produced. Toronto 2011 Indian television started off in 1959 in New Delhi with tests for educational telecasts. and has thousands of programmes in all the states of India. FX.[159][160] Indian small screen programming started off in the mid-1970s. opening them up to cable television. Marathi.According to some historical accounts. Oriya film industry. including stations such as Cartoon Network. At that time there was only one national channel Doordarshan. Some lesser known actors have found success in Bollywood. . and even men of all kinds. Today. the South Indian Buddhist monk Bodhidharma was one of the main founders of the Shaolin Kungfu.[158] Popular media[edit] Television[edit] Main article: Television in India See also: List of Indian television stations Bollywood actors at International Indian Film Academy Awards. Though there was a single channel. By the late 1980s more and more people started to own television sets. whose output is considered to be the largest in the world in terms of number of films produced and number of tickets sold.

Karun. claims Makar. and K. Girish Karnad. influences from the effects of colonialism over centuries and current Western culture . Ritwik Ghatak. the world's largest human resources association with members in 140 countries. traditional Indian culture is defined by a relatively strict social hierarchy.[162] In another report. the India born Nobel Laureate in Economics. accepting women working outside home. in the interview. Shaji N. G.[164] There is a considerable inclination in the . Makar.both collaterally and dialectically. modern India is a country of very diverse cultures with many languages. Several differences such as religion divide the culture. like everyone else in the world. the mainly patrilinear lineage or clan assigned to a Hindu at birth.real or imagined . Sen observes that external images of India in the West often tend to emphasise the difference . However. 124 million are now women. J. Shankar Nag. audience tastes have been changing. multiplexes have mushroomed in most cities.claimed. a far more powerful division is the traditional Hindu bifurcation into non-polluting and polluting occupations. social change in India is in dramatic contrast to the expectations from traditional Indian culture. Prahalad . Girish Kasaravalli. for example. and opening the possibility for women to attain managerial roles in corporate India.[161] This is reinforced. changing the revenue patterns. In recent years. Strict social taboos have governed these groups for thousands of years. Shekhar Kapoor. religions and traditions. some of these lines have blurred and sometimes even disappeared. These writings paint a complex and often conflicting picture of the culture of India. Balachander (see also: Indian film directors). want to express themselves and seek innovation. Mani Ratnam. Children begin by coping and learning to accept and assimilate in this diversity.[163] According to Amartya Sen. that Indians. The patriarch often resolves family issues. the culture of modern India is a complex blend of its historical traditions. particularly in cities. K. These changes have led to Indian families giving education opportunities to girls.between India and the West.[161] Others have a different perception of Indian culture. Nancy Lockwood of Society for Human Resource Management. Daniel. In addition. According to industry consultant Eugene M.K. The issues in India with women empowerment are similar to those elsewhere in the world. He also mentions that from an early age. Adoor Gopalakrishnan. With the opening up of the economy in recent years and consequent exposure to world cinema. Vishwanath. writes that in the past two decades or so. Hrishikesh Mukherjee. Makar notes.who was born in India and grew up there . V.India has produced many cinema-makers like Satyajit Ray. pursuing a career. author of many best selling business books. want to be treated as unique. Lockwood claims that change is slow. Perceptions of Indian culture[edit] Main article: Stereotypes of South Asians India's diversity has inspired many writers to pen their perceptions of the country's culture. Bapu. as individuals. Prahalad by Des Dearlove. He writes important family relations extend as far as gotra. According to an interview with C. yet the scale of cultural change can be sensed from the fact that of India's 397 million workers. C. by the way many believe gods and spirits have an integral and functional role in determining their life. it is common that three or four generations of the family live under the same roof. Guru Dutt. Iyer. children are reminded of their roles and places in society. Kasinathuni Viswanath. In rural areas & sometimes in urban areas as well.

tend to be one of at least three categories. Rosser notes that the discourse in much of the United States about the culture of India is rarely devoted to independent India. observes that there is considerable dispute in India and Orientalist scholars on perceived Indian culture. The perceptions of Indian culture.[166] Rosser conducted numerous interviews and summarised the comments. and some non-British ones did.. It is as if the value of South Asia resides only in its ancient contributions to human knowledge whereas its pathetic attempts to modernise or develop are to be winked at and patronised. classify and record the diversity of Indian culture in different parts of India. She acknowledges that many dispute claims of pervasiveness of caste and strict social hierarchy in modern India. who were somehow our ancestors— to the poverty stricken. and then somehow magically culminates with a eulogy of Mahatma Gandhi. "a country that has existed for millennia in the imaginations of the Europeans. is mostly absent. have an inclination to see Indian culture as more special and extraordinarily interesting than it actually may be. While great many British observers did not agree with such views of India. People quickly make sweeping and flawed metaphysical assumptions about its religion and culture. The curatorial approach. versus the direct experience of the interviewed people.Western countries to distance and highlight the differences in Indian culture from the mainstream of Western traditions. are not weighed by political priorities. A typical textbook trope presents the standard Ancient India Meets the Age of Expansion Approach with a colour photo of the Taj Mahal. is neglected in these homogenised description of India. The curatorial approach. There may be a .. Bayly notes that much of the Indian subcontinent was populated by people for whom the formal distinctions of caste and strict social hierarchies were of only limited importance in their lifestyles. by those who weren't born and raised in India. polytheistic. The deep-seated heterogeneity of Indian traditions. writes Sen:  Exoticist approach: it concentrates on the wondrous aspects of the culture of India. The curators do not look only for the strange. a country that James Mill's imperialist history thought of as grotesquely primitive culture. Western writers and media usually misses. but are far more circumspect when evaluating civil society and political culture in modern India. superstitious. it is an approach that contributes to some confusion about the culture of India. in her book. an American sociologist. The focus of this approach of understanding Indian culture is to present the different. Susan Bayly. in important ways. nevertheless.[165] According to Rosser.  Curatorial approach: it attempts to observe. the strange and as Hegel put it. in different parts of India. and tend to be more free from stereotypes."  Magisterial approach: it assumes a sense of superiority and guardianship necessary to deal with India. caste ridden Hindu way of life . For example: "The presentation of South Asians is a standard pedagogic approach which runs quickly from the "Cradle of Civilisation"—contrasting the Indus Valley with Egypt and Mesopotamia—on past the Aryans. rather than discover and show similarities. Americans of South Asian origins feel the Western perception of the culture of India has numerous stereotypes. crucial aspects of Indian culture and traditions. one inspired by systematic curiosity for the cultural diversity of India within India. The study reports a stark contrast between Western perceptions of the culture of India.

" — A South Asian in America[166] Letters to the editor 'To confront the issue of diversity. who admittedly are rather obscure vis-à-vis the beliefs of most modern Hindus. Amid the dearth of real information there may be found an entire page dedicated to a deity such as Indra or Varuna. or illustrations of the four stages of life or the Four Noble Truths. India has to start with its darker-skinned countrymen' A selection of readers' opinions this past week. Scroll · Yesterday · 07:30 pm 6K Total Views .side bar on ahimsa or a chart of connecting circles graphically explaining samsara and reincarnation.

it’s all a part of intolerant India that is fast emerging. it has to start from within India. they were beaten up for no reason other than the fact that they were outsiders. I feel like I need someone to hug me and tell me it’s okay. – Chinmayi *** Really sad to hear about the brutality because of race. I fear for my skin. If India has to confront the issue of diversity with regards to black people from Africa.Racism in Bangalore As someone who has been fascinated by Indian culture. I was afraid of stepping out of my house before I realised I was 8. we must also blame Bollywood directors. who shape opinions. That said. have a high sex drive’: A Nigerian-Indian takes an auto ride in Bangalore”). But as a black Kenyan who keeps abreast with contemporary world affairs. it has been my wish to visit India soon (“’People like him do drugs. as I write this message. Apart from Bandit Queen. criminals or servants. I was afraid. I have watched a lot of Bollywood movies. I am ashamed to be one.500 miles away. Or maybe it’s an insecure India. goons. Shocking? Actually no . young relatives who went to Bangalore to study said that if they spoke Bengali on the roadside. I am sorry on behalf of all of Bangalore. It seems people in Bangalore or India in general . Dark-skinned people are always depicted as stupid. And sad that people experience the looks and the comments for being different. Even now. I am yet to see another movie where dark-skinned artists are heroes or heroines. – Peter Githinji *** In Kolkata. with its darker-skinned countrymen. And I am sorry. I am a Bangalorean and right now. – Sandhya *** When I read the bit about the auto rickshaw and people being judgmental almost to the point of being dangerous.

and the strapline asks. it’s time to ask why bigotry is so ingrained in India”). please know that there is at least a small group of people who take this as a concern. I think “mixed-ethnicity” is a better word to use. positive things they are doing. The auto driver and the bike driver should feel ashamed of themselves for being unpatriotic and basically just horrible human beings. questions asked and not answered (“As Bengaluru mob strips Tanzanian woman. “What does this say about India?” Where in the article is the question answered? Please don’t fall prey to irresponsible. race refers to a social idea which bears the burden of misuse by late 19th century and early 20th century intellectuals believing that Europeans (or a particular ethnicity) are biologically superior to any other ethnicity. Wishing you the best for being part of the change. – Kenneth Braganza *** I am shocked and alarmed. While there is little I can actually do to make sure that you feel safe. pop journalism subbing. – Kurian *** The strapline of the article mentions “mixed-race journalist”. The headline says it’s time to ask why bigotry is so ingrained in India. It is widely believed by the scientific community that there are no different “races” in humans worldwide. Please do share more incidents of discrimination you have had on public platforms so that more people will know and understand. . As a writer. That said. – Chintamani Rao *** Thank you for your great work.have a stereotypical attitude towards people of colour. Also. – Sonali *** Shame on people who say India is tolerant. I am outraged and horrified at the incident in Bengaluru. can you educate the general population by talking about Africa and the people from Africa who are studying or working in Bangalore? You can talk about their culture and lives. – Dhananjay Muli *** Shoaib Daniyal’s piece suffers from something I see increasingly in Scroll: the text not delivering the depth implied in the headline. It is probably down to ignorance and lack of awareness and perhaps fear of the different.

where people live together in peace. want and worship white skin. The intolerance seen in US . – Dr M Bapuji *** The justice system of the country has totally failed and the common man has lost faith in it (“Why racist attacks alarm liberals – but we ignore the mob violence of everyday India”). There is a lot of hypocrisy in Indian culture and the politicians just reflect that. They know if the person is either connected to white criminals (politicians). Indians are racist and very colour conscious. Indians in Tanzania have been welcomed for hundreds of years and are highly revered. or has enough money to buy these dogs. There is no trouble between locals and foreigners. In my observation. Bangalore is one of the best cauldrons of human experience. The incident in Bengaluru does not represent the intolerance of the people. Australia and elsewhere is not seen here. Students from more than 25 different countries are studying in the college where I teach. I find that this incident clearly highlights the racism and intolerance in India. but actually the majority of Indians (“Why do Indian politicians have such a poor track record on battling racism?”). It’s sad that even the Indian government supports and justifies racism. They are no different. This is why any Indian with a sense of justice and fairness wants to leave India. Although most Indians are dark-skinned. This great experiment of human co-habitation should not be disturbed by such wrong examples. My decades of experience tell me that Kannadigas are gentle.As a Tanzanian of Indian (Gujarati) descent. position or social status. they like. violence and intolerance. I bet your mother wants a “gori bahu” as does every mother in the country. he can bend justice to his liking and that’s why they want to . India will go down in history as the most backward nation. tolerant and friendly. This is true regardless of education. – Amit Gadhvi *** It is not just the politicians. Indians in Tanzania are prosperous only because of the welcoming and warm-hearted nature of Tanzanians. India’s prosperity is nothing but a hell hole if this continues. In general. respected members of society and have held high public offices in the past. – Dan *** I have been living in Bangalore for the last three to four years in areas where you can find people of all races. It is a shame that Tanzanians are treated so poorly in India. colours and complexions.

provide instant justice. knowing timely punishment will be provided by system. the common man will not take the law into his own hands. Moreover. he will also be scared that he may be trapped by the law for taking the law into his own hands. If we strengthen our justice delivery system. – Mohan C Bhatt .