Netflix’s ‘Indian Matchmaking’ Is The Talk Of India — And Not In A Good Way

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Is ‘Indian Matchmaking’ realistic? Four UAE couples on how arranged marriages are evolving

Based on criteria they provide, clients are matched with ostensibly compatible dates, but they soon find that the goal of marriage is more difficult to attain that they had hoped — even with a matchmaker who consults biological data profiles, astrologers and face readers. Listen Listening Does the addictively bingeable series provide an accurate look at the process of arranged marriage for Indians and Indian Americans in ?

Indians living in India approach marriage and dating differently than Indians living in the U. And Indians who have emigrated to the U.

In the UK, Suman Marriage Bureau is marking its 48th year as a popular matrimonial service based out of Southall, west London. “Discussions.

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Matchmaking

Critics accuse the show of stereotyping and commodifying women, lacking diversity and promoting a backwards vision of marriage where astrologers and meddling parents are more influential than the preferences of brides and grooms. They complain that the series, which follows matchmaker Sima Taparia as she jets between Mumbai and the U.

In fact, the real problem may be their discomfort with the way marriage works in India, with social stability prized over individual happiness. A small fraction still practices child marriage, with some communities holding betrothal ceremonies as soon as a girl is born. At the other end of the spectrum, there is growing acceptance of queer relationships, divorce and even avoiding marriage altogether. But most Indian marriages are still arranged.

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Indian Matchmaking: Tackling the different shades of colourism

These men and women — or boys and girls, as they are referred to in Indian society, perhaps to reinforce their youth and innocence — of Indian origin are in their 20s and 30s, living in India and the US. Credit: Netflix. Indian Matchmaking just takes this concept further. Of course, each of these comes with their own good, bad and ugly. I think the entire experience felt like going on a journey with no idea as to what could turn up next. There have always been matchmakers and, more recently, marriage agencies that connected families.

What makes a show like ‘Indian Matchmaking‘ possible? This book examines marriage in India. An excerpt from The Shaadi Story: Behind The.

Some believe the biodata tradition is on the rise, in part because of the rapid pace of modern life and the increasing popularity of matrimonial Web sites. Gujarati parents of year-old Brahman boy, NRI nonresident Indian living in the United States, working in management, seek suitable match with Brahman girl. Born in India but raised in Artesia, a suburb southeast of downtown Los Angeles, Thaker assumed he would find his soul mate on his own.

But two years ago, while Thaker was in India, his parents posted a matrimonial ad in a local newspaper. Thaker initially objected, but his parents insisted. It was tradition. Is she a good match? What is his income potential? Used primarily by South Asians in arranged marriages, biodata emphasizes compatibility, education and family history, including caste, more than romance.

There are also physical factors to be considered, such as complexion and, occasionally, blood type.

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Matchmaking is the process of matching two or more people together, usually for the purpose of marriage , but the word is also used in the context of sporting events such as boxing, in business, in online video games and in pairing organ donors. In some cultures, the role of the matchmaker was and is quite professionalised. The Ashkenazi Jewish shadchan , or the Hindu astrologer , were often thought to be essential advisors and also helped in finding right spouses as they had links and a relation of good faith with the families.

In cultures where arranged marriages were the rule, the astrologer often claimed that the stars sanctified matches that both parents approved of, making it quite difficult for the possibly-hesitant children to easily object — and also making it easy for the astrologer to collect his fee. Social dance , especially in frontier North America, the contra dance and square dance , has also been employed in matchmaking, usually informally.

However, when farming families were widely separated and kept all children on the farm working, marriage-age children could often only meet in church or in such mandated social events.

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What influences our youth to set aside their enterprising, free-wheeling spirit to follow the well-trodden path of arranged marriages? Part of the answer lies in the deep socialisation process, which is woven into the fabric of the close-knit extended Indian family, and its rootedness in the larger network of society. The young too seem to believe in the cultural definition of marriage as a family affair, rather than an individual undertaking. Harmony and shared values arising from common backgrounds are seen as more important than individual attraction.

The common grounds provided by an arranged match — familiar customs, foods, relatives, incomes, etc — also helps in negotiating the dark thicket of matchmaking. The upside is also that this aids the adjustment process with the new partner and family, a stand-in for what is seen as the variable element of love. When it comes to daughters, the disciplining fetters become even tighter, since a tarnished reputation would scupper her chances in the marriage market.

With whom? But in India it continues well into adulthood. It translates into interference in career decisions, choice of friends, dietary preferences, etc. Despite this over-involvement, the so-called transgressions like drinking, smoking and premarital sex must be surgically hidden from their view. Despite the changes happening in urban centres, large parts of India still have families that view even harmless interaction with the opposite sex with suspicion and deep unease.

An environment which fosters such a pervasive suspicion of the mingling of boys and girls, can hardly have its young find their own partners.

Indian Matchmaking: Why I have finally decided to go for arranged marriage

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Indian Matchmaking: Netflix’s ‘divisive’ dating show causes storm. Series following contestants hoping to be chosen for arranged marriage has.

This book is an extensive and thorough exploration of the ways in which the middle class in India select their spouse. Using the prism of matchmaking, this book critically unpacks the concept of the ‘modern’ and traces the importance of moralities and values in the making of middle class identities, by bringing to the fore intersections and dynamics of caste, class, gender, and neoliberalism.

The author discusses a range of issues: romantic relationships among youth, use of online technology and of professional services like matrimonial agencies and detective agencies, encounters of love and heartbreak, impact of experiences of pain and humiliation on spouse-selection, and the involvement of family in matchmaking. Based on this comprehensive account, she elucidates how the categories of ‘love’ and ‘arranged’ marriages fall short of explaining, in its entirety and essence, the contemporary process of spouse-selection in urban India.

Though the ethnographic research has been conducted in India, this book is of relevance to social scientists studying matchmaking practices, youth cultures, modernity and the middle class in other societies, particularly in parts of Asia. While being based on thorough scholarship, the book is written in accessible language to appeal to a larger audience. Jindal Global University, India. She was also a Visiting Scholar at St.

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Ketaki Desai and Sonam Joshi. Naina Hiranandani, co-founder of matchmaking service Sirf Coffee, says that dietary preferences have become very important to people. What are you going to do, check his stools every day? Dating coach Simran Mangharam has also noticed this trend.

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The reason is simply this: The marriage market, which was till now thought to be exclusively under the command and control of boy log and their judgy Mummyjis, suddenly seems to have a new claimant — a certain type of women they hate, i. Women who love themselves, know their mind, and the kind of partner they seek. But while most Indian boys go to see girls with their Mummyjis and Daddyjis in tow, these girls are driving solo in their cars to check out the boys.

They meet them in restaurants where they drink, chat, laugh, order non-veg food and, after all that, reject the boys. The world of matrimonial alliances is in wide-eyed shock. Jaws have dropped and words are not forming. Just froth. Because seeing these girls prance about expressing their opinions is conjuring a scary scenario in the minds of Mummyjis cradling their precious boys — that their saputs may not be special after all, and may well be rejected.

And in all this, the main object of loathing is one Aparna, a year-old Sindhi girl from Houston, Texas.

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