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BITS OF CULTURE - India
 
Languages
Map
Cultural Values
Main Religion & Death Concepts/Rituals
Health Care Values
Diet
Interesting Facts
 

Languages

Official language:
Hindi

Other languages:
Assamese
Bengali
Gujarati
Kannada
Kashmiri
Malayalam
Marathi
Oriya
Punjabi
Sanskrit
Sindhi
Tamil
Telugu
Urdu

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Map



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Cultural Values
  • Extended families often live together, with two or more adult generations, or brothers, sharing a house. In much of the countryside, neighboring houses share a wall.
  • Men work mainly in the fields, although where rice is grown, women transplant the seedlings. The entire family will pitch in at harvest time because most agricultural work is still done by hand.
  • Women fetch water, prepare meals, clean, and care for milking animals that are stabled in or near the house compound.
  • Most worship is done in the home, where a room or an alcove is devoted to images of a god or gods.
  • Young girls are expected to help with the women's work, and girls care for their younger siblings. Boys have fewer responsibilities, though they often herd goats and bring cattle to and from the fields.
  • In most cases a woman who marries moves to her husband’s village from her home village. Visits to her birth family, who may live a day's journey or more away, are generally rare, especially as the woman grows older.
  • Senior men (and their wives) exercise power in the family.
  • Except for widows, who wear plain white, saris are generally colorful and can be made of cotton or the finest embroidered silks.

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Main Religion & Death Concepts/Rituals
  • Hinduism .
  • Hindus prefer to be cremated; Christians & Muslims prefer to be buried.

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Health Care Values

  • The news should be given to the head of the family.
  • Decisions regarding treatment location and options will depend on the wishes of the patient and their family. The extended family often provides support.
  • Vegetarians may not want substances obtained from the killing of an animal.
  • Death and cancer may be taboo for some.

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Diet
  • Consists mainly of the staple grain—rice, or wheat in the form of unleavened bread baked on a griddle—with stir-fried vegetables, cooked lentils, and yogurt.
  • In the north, much more meat is eaten and the cuisine is often 'Mughal style', which bears a closer relationship to food of the Middle East and Central Asia. The emphasis is more on spices and less on chilli; grains and breads are more popular than rice.
  • In the south, more rice is eaten, there is more vegetarian food, and the curries tend to be hotter.
  • Another feature of southern vegetarian food is that you do not use eating utensils; just scoop the food up with your fingers - though not with those of your left hand.

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Interesting Facts
  • India's national cricket team competes at the highest international level.
  • The number system was invented by India. Aryabhatta was the scientist who invented the digit zero.
  • Chess was invented in India.
  • Algebra, Trigonometry and Calculus are studies, which originated in India.
  • The' place value system' and the 'decimal system' were developed in 100 BC in India.

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