Arranged marriages are traditional in Indian society and continue to account for an overwhelming majority of marriages in India. Despite the fact that romantic love is "fulsomely celebrated" in both Indian mass media (such as Bollywood) and folklore, and the arranged marriage tradition lacks any official legal recognition or support, the institution has proved to be "surprisingly robust" in adapting to changed social circumstances and has defied predictions of decline as India modernized. Arranged marriages are believed to have initially risen to prominence in the Indian subcontinent when the historical Vedic religion gradually gave way to classical Hinduism (the ca. 500 BCE period), substantially displacing other alternatives that were once more prominent. In the urban culture of modern India, the differentiation between arranged and love marriages is increasingly seen as a "false dichotomy" with the emergence of phenomena such as "self-arranged marriages" and free-choice on the part of the prospective spouses.
The Indian subcontinent has historically been home to a wide... Read More