Marriages in Heaven
Arranged marriages have been an important aspect of traditional Indian culture since ancient times, and they are still common today. In an arranged marriage, parents find a groom for their daughter or a bride for their son. These matches are typically initiated and arranged by parentsé social contacts, or matchmakers. But times have changed. In the last 20 to 30 years, there has been a widespread exodus from the villages to the cities, and significant emigration, most notably to the United States. Men have moved away from their homes in search of better education and employment, and more women are working, which increases their opportunities to find spouses on their own. Such marriages are referred to as “love marriages.”
This illuminating documentary explores the ways in which globalization and modernization are affecting young people and changing the traditions of marriage among Indians living both in India and in America. The film examines marriages representing groups from a variety of regions of India, and includes an array of fascinating interviews with parents, matchmakers, astrologers, and of course young brides and grooms.
By focusing on an event of interest to all young people, “Marriages in Heaven” provides compelling material to stimulate discussion in a wide range of classes in Asian and Indian studies, sociology and social psychology, gender studies, and cultural anthropology. It was produced by Annada D. Rathi.