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The average Indian man is likely more financially successful and socially engaged than his father—more likely to have a car and a Facebook page—but the popularity of matrimonial websites might suggest that he is simply using these resources to preserve an antiquated and gender-prejudiced conception of marriage that’s counterintuitive to modernization, at least by the Western definition.

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It highlights a false dichotomy between modern arranged marriages and fairytale love.

Last week, I joined Shaadi.com, India’s oldest and most popular matrimonial website.

A few years back, a media psychologist named Srividya Ramasubramanian examined 24 American and British films about India for the prevalence and portrayal of certain tropes and saw little more than a country “consistently portrayed as backward, uncivilized, savage, and traditional.” The Western notion of “Indian-ness,” Ramasubramanian writes, is predicated upon a sense of Occidental superiority, complicit with a sort of “cultural imperialism…

by establishing Indian peoples as inferior and incompetent who need to be civilized.”Ramasubramanian’s study qualitatively confirms that the India offered to us in the West is an India of “inept subordinates” who deserve either our scorn or sympathy.

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Our free dating site is a great way to find an amazing women from Russia, Ukraine and other countries of the Easten Europe.This is why matrimonial websites attract controversy.They operate at the awkward nexus in modern Indian society between intracultural custom and intercultural connectivity, a conflict-prone junction built by a sudden 20-year economic boom that came without a societal user’s manual.If there’s truth to caricature, then call my joining the online matrimony network a modern-day leap onto a bandwagon of millennia-old social custom.“Shaadi” is the Hindi word for wedding; is, intuitively, a wedding arranged via the Internet.It’s one of more than 100 Indian websites that comprise the country’s thriving online matrimonial market, where an individual can browse for his or her ideal spouse among a catalog of potential candidates organized by the personal information that apparently matters most: religion, caste, income, fairness of skin, family background, and so on. Unlike online dating services, which at least superficially foster some sort of romantic connection, and which are effectively nonexistent in India, matrimonial websites are predicated on the idea that the first meeting between two paired users will be to chat about their wedding.In June, the Delhi-based Economic Times valued the online matrimony market at around 5.1 billion Indian rupees (roughly million)with an annual growth rate of 30 percent: a rose in the snowdrift of the Indian economy, whose recent erratic nature has shaken everything from exchange rates to onion prices.

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