Fragrances Product In India Cultural Studies Essay

Culture is defined as the social and political forces that influence the growth of a human. It is very important to study on the culture of the product targeting country, because culture sufficiently influences the consumers in many ways. Therefore we should introduce the culture first.

Indian culture is diverse, rich and as a result unique in its special way. Manners, ways to communicate with one another are one of the important components of Indian culture. Even though Indian have accepted modern means of living, improved lifestyle, Indian values and beliefs still remain unchanged. A human can change his way of clothing, way of eating and living but the values in a human always remains unchanged because they are deeply rooted into Indian hearts, mind, body and soul which we receive from Indian culture.

The culture of India is one of the oldest and exclusive cultures in the world. In India, there is amazing cultural diversity throughout the country. The South, North, and Northeast have their own distinct cultures and almost every state has carved out its own cultural niche. There is hardly any culture in the world that is as varied and unique as India. India is a vast country, having variety of geographical features and climatic conditions. India is home to some of the most ancient civilizations, including four major world religions, Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism and Sikhism. [1] 

A combination of these factors has resulted into an exclusive culture- Indian culture. Indian culture is a composite mixture of varying styles and influences. In the matter of cuisine, for instance, the North and the South are totally different. Festivals in India are characterized by color, gaiety, enthusiasm, prayers and rituals. In the realm of music, there are varieties of folk, popular, pop, and classical music. The classical tradition of music in India includes the Carnatic and the Hindustani music.

India, a place of diversity, is fascinating with its ancient and complex culture, dazzling contrasts and breathtaking physical beauty. Among the most remarkable features of India, is the arts and culture in particular. The Indian culture has persisted through the ages precisely for the reasons of antiquity, unity, continuity and the universality of its nature. Thus within the ambience of Indian culture one can identify ‘Indian Music’, ‘Indian Dance’, ‘Indian Cinema’, ‘Indian Literature’, Indian Cuisine’ ‘Indian Fairs and Festivals’ and so on.

Indian culture treats guests as god and serves them and takes care of them as if they are a part and parcel of the family itself. Even though when Indian don’t have anything to eat, the guests are never left hungry and are always looked after by the members of the family. “Respect one another” is another lesson that is taught from the books of Indian culture. [2] Helpful nature is another striking feature in Indian culture. Indian culture tells us to multiply and distribute joy and happiness and share sadness and pain. It tells Indian that Indian can develop co-operation and better living amongst themselves and subsequently make this world a better place to live in.

Nowadays the Indian Culture has crossed the geographic boundaries and has extended globally. No matter Indian or a person from any other country, will be attracted

by the exuberant Indian Culture and traditions.

1.1 Life philosophy and Religion of Indian

Religion influence

Figure 1 Religions in India [3] 

Religions have played the most crucial role in Indian life values. Besides Christianity and Islam, all the other four major religions practiced in India, namely Hinduism, Sikhism, Buddhism and Jainism, were born in India and have exerted a powerful combined impact on the Indian thought and philosophy of life. After centuries’ evolution, Hinduism is the majority religion with 80.5% of the population of India. Islam (13.4%), Christianity (2.3%), Sikhism (1.9%), Buddhism (0.8%) and Jainism (0.4%) are the other minor religions followed by the people of India according to the 2001 census.

A religion can be defined as a system of belief in the supernatural, omnipotent and omnipresent power, which controls the destiny of humankind, called ‘God’, and who is entitled to obedience and worship. Religion is the personal relationship of humans with God and hence there could be said to be as many religions as individuals. However, some propounded faiths are followed by groups of people and these have come to be called as ‘Religions’ in common parlance. The contribution of different religious faiths practiced in India to values related to peace and harmony are summarized below:

Hinduism has not been proposed by any single individual but has evolved through the ages. As an ethical religion it enunciates four aims of life (a) ‘Dharma’ (observance of religious and ethical laws); (b) ‘Arth’ (living an honest life); (c) ‘Kama’ (satisfying legitimate desires); and (d) ‘Moksha’ (attaining salvation through emancipation from birth and death and unity with God. Hinduism believes that through moral life humans are elevated to greater spiritual heights. Towards this end, the practice of ‘Yam’ and ‘Niyam’ are prescribed. ‘Yama’ implies: (a) ‘Ahimsa’ (non -injury to others); (b) ‘Satya’ (truth); (c) ‘Asteya’ (non-stealing); (d) ‘Brahmacharya’ (celibacy during the first 25 years of life); and (e) ‘Apar Graha’ (non-acquisitiveness).Niyam implies: (a) ‘Shaucha’ (cleanliness); (b) ‘Tapas’ (awakening of vital forces); (c)’Santosh’ (contentment); and (d) ‘Swadhyaya’ (self study/analysis). ‘Shanti’ (peace) is the highest craving of all Hindus. This includes peace within and peace without. After every ceremony or religious recitation, Hindus pronounce ‘Om Shanti! Shanti! Shanti!’ i.e., peace to men, peace to forces of nature, and peace to the entire universe.

Islam believes the following behaviour-based values: (a) Honesty; (b) Meekness; (c) Politeness; (d) Forgiveness; (e) Goodness; (f) Courage; (g) Veracity; (h) Patience; and (i) Sympathy.

Christianity pursue: (a) Love of God and fellow humans; (b) Good conduct for a happy life; (c) Not losing one’s soul for worldly gain; (d) Worship of God and service to humankind; (e) Repentance for pardon; (f) Justice, fortitude and temperance; and (g) Avoidance of vices, and sins.

Sikhism advocates the following moral values: (a) Truthfulness; (b) Humility; (c) Charity; (d) Dignity of labor; (e) Character of a saint and the strength of a soldier; and; (f) Noble deeds.

Buddhism believes: (a) that right understanding, thought and speech, together with moral peaceful conduct, mental discipline and wisdom, eliminate the causes of suffering in life; (b) that material welfare is only a means and not the end; (c) that a pure life, based on moral and spiritual principles, leads to happiness; (d) that kindness, goodness, charity and truth win over their opposite sentiments; (e) that compassion should be the driving force of action; and (f) that contentment and tolerance are keys to peace and happiness. True renunciation, according to Buddhism, does not mean running away from the world. It is considered more courageous and praiseworthy to practice Buddhism by living among fellow human beings, while helping and serving them.

Jainism proposes the following values: (a) Live and let live; (b) Souls within us are immortal and potentially divine; (c) Self-discipline, moral conduct and self-purification are the goals for spiritual perfection; and (d) Individuals, communities, nations, races. [4] 

Religion tolerance

Before proceeding further discussion we should also discuss the often repeated statement that all religions have mutual respect for each other. This seems that natural as we are told that all religions lead to a common goal – unity with the Supreme. These thoughts are indeed important. But what is it that inculcates respect about a certain thing? What is the meaning of respect? Respect is defined as high opinion or regarded as for a high quality. In itself it implies recognition of superiority in the thing that is respected. One cannot have respect for something inferior.

When a member of one religion claims that he respects another religion, he obviously does not recognize the other religion higher than his own. And if he does consider another religion as superior to his own, it is but natural that he should get himself converted to the other religion, but he does not do so implies that the word respect for him does not connote recognition of superiority or regard for a higher quality. What the term respect implies is tolerance and non-interference as regards other religions.

Again, if one religion respects other religions, there would be no conversions into that religion. We know that almost every religion wants to convert members of other religions to it and every religion considers itself the true faith, while other religions are untrue and their members are either pagans, infidels or heretics. Hence it would be inconsistent with the true and evident spirit of religion to say that one religion respects others, what can utmost be said is that while some religions tolerate other religions, most others do not.

In my opinion, it needs to be conceded that in India, the pantheistic character of Hinduism, the religion of the majority, has been conducive to the survival of religious tolerance. [5] 


Indian family culture is regarded as the most important part of its culture. A family typically has a powerful influence over choices made by its individual members, and of their communities.

In India, people learn the essential idea of cultural life within the bosom of a family. In most of the country, the basic units of society are the patrilineal family unit and wider kinship groupings. The most widely desired residential unit is the joint family, ideally consisting of three or four patrilineally related generations, all living under one roof, working, eating, worshiping, and cooperating together in mutually beneficial social and economic activities. Patrilineal joint families include men related through the male line, along with their wives and children. Most young women expect to live with their husband’s relatives after marriage, but they retain important bonds with their natal families.

Despite of the continuous and increasing impact of urbanization, secularization, and Westernization, the traditional joint household, both in ideal and in practice, remains the primary social force in the lives of most Indians. Loyalty to family is a deeply held ideal for almost everyone.

Large families tend to be flexible and well-suited to modern Indian life, especially for the 67 percent of Indians who are farmers or agricultural workers or work in related activities. As in most primarily agricultural societies, few individuals can hope to achieve economic security without being part of a cooperating group of kinsmen. The joint family is also common in cities, where kinship ties can be crucial to obtaining scarce jobs or financial assistance. Numerous prominent Indian families, such as the Tatas, Birlas, and Sarabhais, retain joint family arrangements even as they work together to control some of the country’s largest financial empires.

The joint family is an ancient Indian group, but it has made some changes in the late twentieth century. Although several generations living together is the ideal, actual living arrangements vary widely depending on region, social status, and economic circumstance. Many Indians live in joint families that deviate in various ways from the ideal, and many live in nuclear families–a couple with their unmarried children–as is the most common pattern in the West. However, even where the ideal joint family is seldom found, there are often strong networks of kinship ties through which economic assistance and other benefits are obtained. Not infrequently, clusters of relatives live very near each other, easily available to respond to the give and take of kinship obligations. Even when relatives cannot actually live in close proximity, they typically maintain strong bonds of kinship and attempt to provide each other with economic help, emotional support, and other benefits.

As joint families become ever larger, they are inevitably divided into smaller units, passing through a predictable cycle over time. The breakup of a joint family into smaller units does not necessarily represent the rejection of the joint family ideal. Rather, it is usually a response to a variety of conditions, including the need for some members to move from village to city, or from one city to another to take advantage of employment opportunities. Splitting of the family is often blamed on quarrelling women–typically, the wives of coresident brothers. Although women’s disputes may, in fact, lead to family division, men’s disagreements do so as well. Despite cultural ideals of brotherly harmony, adult brothers frequently quarrel over land and other matters, leading them to decide to live under separate roofs and divide their property. Frequently, a large joint family divides after the demise of elderly parents, when there is no longer a single authority figure to hold the family factions together. After division, each new residential unit, in its turn, usually becomes joint when sons of the family marry and bring their wives to live in the family home. [6] 

Variations in Family Structure

Some family types bear special mention because of their unique qualities. In the sub-Himalayan region of Uttar Pradesh, polygyny is commonly practiced. There, among Hindus, a simple polygynous family is composed of a man, his two wives, and their unmarried children. Various other family types occur there, including the supplemented subpolygynous household–a woman whose husband lives elsewhere (perhaps with his other wife), her children, plus other adult relatives. Polygyny is also practiced in other parts of India by a tiny minority of the population, especially in families in which the first wife has not been able to bear children.

Among the Buddhist people of the mountainous Ladakh District of Jammu and Kashmir, who have cultural ties to Tibet, fraternal polyandry is practiced, and a household may include a set of brothers with their common wife or wives. This family type, in which brothers also share land, is almost certainly linked to the extreme scarcity of cultivable land in the Himalayan region, because it discourages fragmentation of holdings.

The peoples of the northeastern hill areas are known for their matriliny, tracing descent and inheritance in the female line rather than the male line. One of the largest of these groups, the Khasis–an ethnic or tribal people in the state of Meghalaya–are divided into matrilineal clans; the youngest daughter receives almost all of the inheritance including the house. A Khasi husband goes to live in his wife’s house. Khasis, many of whom have become Christian, have the highest literacy rate in India, and Khasi women maintain notable authority in the family and community.

Perhaps the best known of India’s unusual family types is the traditional Nayar taravad , or great house. The Nayars are a cluster of castes in Kerala. High-ranking and prosperous, the Nayars maintained matrilineal households in which sisters and brothers and their children were the permanent residents. After an official prepuberty marriage, each woman received a series of visiting husbands in her room in the taravad at night. Her children were all legitimate members of the taravad . Property, matrilineally inherited, was managed by the eldest brother of the senior woman. This system, the focus of much anthropological interest, has been disintegrating in the twentieth century, and in the 1990s probably fewer than 5 percent of the Nayars live in matrilineal taravads . Like the Khasis, Nayar women are known for being well-educated and powerful within the family. [7] 

Malabar rite Christians, an ancient community in Kerala, adopted many practices of their powerful Nayar neighbors, including naming their sons for matrilineal forebears. Their kinship system, however, is patrilineal. Kerala Christians have a very high literacy rate, as do most Indian Christian groups.


A young married couple starts to take adult responsibilities. These include work inside and outside of the home, childbearing and childrearing, developing and maintaining social relationships, fulfilling religious obligations, and enhancing family prosperity and prestige as much as possible.

The young husband usually remains resident with his natal family, surrounded by well-known relatives and neighbors. The young bride, however, is typically thrust into a strange household, where she is expected to follow ideal patterns of chaste and cheerfully obedient behavior.

Ideally, the Hindu wife should honor her husband as if he were her personal god. Through her marriage, a woman becomes an auspicious wife, adorned with bangles and amulets designed to protect her husband’s life and imbued with ritual powers to influence prosperity and procreation. At her wedding, the Hindu bride is likened to Lakshmi, the Goddess of Wealth, in symbolic recognition of the fact that the groom’s patrilineage can increase and prosper only through her fertility and labors. Despite this simile, elegantly stated in the nuptial ritual, the young wife is pressed into service as the most subordinate member of her husband’s family. If any misfortunes happen to befall her affinal family after her arrival, she may be blamed as the bearer of bad luck. Not surprisingly, some young women find adjusting to these new circumstances extremely upsetting. A small percentage experience psychological distress so severe that they seem to be possessed by outspoken ghosts and spirits.

In these difficult early days of a marriage, and later on throughout her life, a woman looks to her natal kin for moral and often economic support. Although she has become part of another household and lineage, she depends on her natal relatives–especially her brothers–to back her up in a variety of circumstances. A wide range of long visits home, ritual obligations, gifts, folklore, and songs reflect the significance of a woman’s lifelong ties to her blood relatives.

By producing children, especially highly valued sons, and, ultimately, becoming a mother-in-law herself, a woman gradually improves her position within the conjugal household. In motherhood the married woman finds social approval, economic security, and emotional satisfaction.

A man and his wife owe respect and obedience to his parents and other senior relatives. Ideally, all cooperate in the joint family enterprise. Gradually, as the years pass, members of the younger generation take the place of the older generation and become figures of authority and respect. As this transition occurs, it is generally assumed that younger family members will physically care for and support elders until their demise.

In their adult years, men and women engage in a wide variety of tasks and occupations strongly linked to socioeconomic status, including caste membership, wealth, place of residence, and many other factors. In general, the higher the status of a family, the less likely its members are to engage in manual labor and the more likely its members are to be served by employees of lower status. Although educated women are increasingly working outside the home, even in urbane circles some negative stigma is still attached to women’s employment. In addition, students from high-status families do not work at temporary menial jobs as they do in many Western countries.

People of low status work at the many menial tasks that high-status people disdain. Poor women cannot afford to abstain from paid labor, and they work alongside their menfolk in the fields and at construction projects. In low-status families, women are less likely than high-status women to unquestioningly accept the authority of men and even of elders because they are directly responsible for providing income for the family. Among Sweepers, very low-status latrine cleaners, women carry out more of the traditional tasks than do men and hold a relatively less subordinate position in their families than do women of traditional high-status families. Such women are, nonetheless, less powerful in the society at large than are women of economically prosperous high-status families, who control and influence the control of more assets than do poor women.

Along with economically supporting themselves, their elders, and their children, adults must maintain and add to the elaborate social networks upon which life depends. Offering gracious hospitality to guests is a key ingredient of proper adult behavior. Adults must also attend to religious matters, carrying out rites intended to protect their families and communities. In these efforts, men and women constantly work for the benefit of their kin groups, castes, and other social units. [8] 


India is a hierarchical society. Within Indian culture, whether in the north or the south, Hindu or Muslim, urban or village, virtually all things, people, and groups of people are ranked according to various essential qualities. If one is attuned to the theme of hierarchy in India, one can discern it everywhere. Although India is a political democracy, in daily life there is little advocacy of or adherence to notions of equality.

Figure 2 The hierarchy of the India sociaty

Castes and caste-like groups, those quintessential groups, with which almost all Indians are associated or are ranked. Within most villages or towns, everyone knows the relative rankings of each locally represented caste, and people’s behavior toward one another is constantly shaped by this knowledge. Between the extremes of the very high and very low castes, however, there is sometimes disagreement on the exact relative ranking of castes clustered in the middle.

Castes are primarily associated with Hinduism but also exist among other Indian religious groups. Muslims sometimes expressly deny that they have castes–they state that all Muslims are brothers under God–but observation of Muslim life in various parts of India reveals the existence of caste like groups and clear concern with social hierarchy. Among Indian Christians, too, differences in caste are acknowledged and maintained.

Throughout India, individuals are also ranked according to their wealth and power. For example, there are “big men” (bare admi , in Hindi) and “little men” (chhote admi ) everywhere. “Big men” sit confidently on chairs, while “little men” come before them to make requests, either standing or crouching down on their haunches, certainly not presuming to sit beside a man of high status as an equal. Even men of nearly equal status who might share a string cot to sit on take their places carefully–the higher-ranking man at the head of the cot, the lower-ranking man at the foot.

Within families and kinship groupings, there are many distinctions of hierarchy. Men outrank women of the same or similar age, and senior relatives outrank junior relatives. Several other kinship relations involve formal respect. For example, in northern India, a daughter-in-law of a household shows deference to a daughter of a household. Even among young siblings in a household, there is constant acknowledgment of age differences: younger siblings never address an older sibling by name, but rather by respectful terms for elder brother or elder sister. However, an older sibling may address the younger by name.

Even in a business or academic setting, where colleagues may not openly espouse traditional observance of caste or class ranking behavior, they may set up fictive kinship relations, addressing one another by kinship terms reflecting family or village-style hierarchy. For example, a younger colleague might respectfully address an older colleague as chachaji (respected father’s younger brother), gracefully acknowledging the superior position of the older colleague. [9] 

What India Culture Today is Iike×0.jpg?w=420

India culture today was influenced by the ancient culture of India, but something new is happening that is stirring up differences in Indian society. While India’s traditions and core values are pretty much the same as ever, some aspects of the culture have changed drastically. For one thing, younger generations have become more independent and have accepted new ideas from western cultures. For example, sexual expression and display of affection have been kept behind closed doors for the most part in India many past generations, while these things have been culturally accepted in the U.S. and other western countries for a long time now.

The older Indian generations still consider it taboo for a man and woman to hold each other’s hands in public, while younger couples have their own ideas of what is acceptable in India culture today. Essentially, the older generations are beginning to realize that India’s youths are a new and different generation and that they must accept these differences rather than disown their kids.

Another visible change in India culture today can be found in Indian films. Mumbai is like India’s Los Angeles, California or New York City. It’s the headquarters for production of many of the famous Indian Bollywood Movies. These fantastic films are an expression of Indian art and are filled with great music, amazing dancing, and Indian celebrities.

In the past, Bollywood films were pretty conservative in regards to the amount of skin they would reveal and the body language that dance scenes displayed. However, in the last decades, the dancing in Bollywood Films has become much more provocative and the clothing has become much racier than in films of the past. The outfits often look like something you might see on the U.S. show dancing with the Stars.

Another change to the traditional culture in India involves arranged marriages. Traditionally, parents found a marriage partner for their son or daughter and would arrange a marriage between the two.

In some cases, a man and a woman were promised to one another in their teens and had no say in the decision. Many times, the bride and groom-to-be never actually met until their wedding day!

Arranged marriages were popular for hundreds of years. This was in part because pressure from family members was so strong, but mostly because this type of marriage was deeply ingrained in the culture in India. Another factor was that divorce was considered so taboo in India. Many couples stayed together even when unhappy.

Flash forward to today, perceived independence brought change. While arranged marriages still exist, they have mutated. India culture today allows young men and women have more freedom of choice. Now many youths pick who they will marry, and most certainly have a chance to meet their future life partner.

When Indian families attempt to arrange marriages today, things are done differently. Nowadays, parents of the young man or woman will allow their kids to meet potential mates in advance. If there is not a reciprocal liking between the two, they may decline and meet other candidates.

These meetings are like auditions, or speed-dates. The difference being that your family is there with you. Can you say awkward? Well, it’s better to be uncomfortable for a potentially chemistry-free meeting, than be stuck in a prearranged marriage that may lack chemistry and make a person miserable.

Another factor for changes to Indian culture today is the influence of western culture. Many young men and women are sent to the United States, or other countries, to study and to acquire jobs. While away from India, they experience new rights of passage, independence and accept new cultural ideas.

Plus, the internet has allowed people from different countries and cultural backgrounds to connect with one another, and to keep up on global events. It’s nearly impossible for anyone to be kept in the dark about other cultures or what’s going on in the world, given current technologies. [10] 

Bottom line is that India culture today is different from what it used to be, but India’s core traditions and cultural values mostly remain intact. Most important, the Indian culture today is still rich, beautiful and accepting of other cultural beliefs.

1.2 Standards of Beauty in India

This section will contain some information about beauty and perfume in India. The main focus will be beauty and fragrance culture for women, given the explained target group.

In the present day, the urban Indian woman has a cacophony of voices telling her how she should look, from television and Bollywood to fashion magazines to her family. Depending on the woman, the messages she is hearing may vary significantly from each other. As such, it is necessary to go straight to the sources-advertisements, television, magazines, and the women themselves-to determine what Indian women believe is beautiful, and, by extension, what appearance Indian women strive to attain.

It is reasonable to believe that the issues discussed here are similar to those experienced by many urban Indian women, but the rural experience, and even that of women in smaller or more traditional urban center, may be significantly different. Still, in most areas where television and similar mediums have penetrated, Indian women are likely to be absorbing some of the same messages. [11] 

图引用¼š 印度的女æ€å®¡ç¾Žè‚¼ˆRename.d¼‰ – 路乐声 – 老路上的书屋~æ-‡å“é˜

The most important aspect of skin in India is, of course, a clear complexion. This feature is so important to the imagining of a beautiful Indian woman that it is emphasized in places ranging from the predictable fashion magazines to the more unexpected job advertisement.[30]However, the far

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