27 Jun Cultural Convergence by Prof. Kanchan Luthra
India is the land of cultural integration or cohesiveness that provides its people a sense of cultural belonging.
Cultural convergence theory says that two cultures will be more and more alike as the interaction between them increases. The more these cultures interact at the socio-cultural level, the more the exchange of ideas, thought and beliefs. This will lead to both acceptance and conflict. The more the acceptance, more the convergence.
The best example of cultural convergence is the usage and acceptance of English language. English is probably the only language that is the most widely used and is also the official language of maximum number of countries.
There are also words from other languages that have been adapted from other languages. These words have merged into the English language in a way that they are now accepted by the Oxford Dictionary. Words like silhouette, genre, stampede, breeze, chemistry, bronze, brainwashing, bungalow, khaki, jungle or paradise are some of the words that are taken from other languages.
The world has seen a lot of changes in their cultural norms. Fashion and clothing is one such norm where we have seen a lot of changes. Looking at the Indian scenario, in today’s times, most of the youth like Jeans and T-shirt as a most preferred mode of dressing. Today, the moment students are asked to wear formal clothing, only western formals come to mind. Very few students would wear Indian formals.
Festival celebration is another way to portray our culture. In Mumbai we find that the festival of Ganpati is celebrated by people of all religion and caste. Similarly the celebrations for Christmas is equally fun filled.
Entertainment is one sector where we really find cultural convergence and divergence both. 100 years of Indian cinema has given us ample examples of Indian films inspired by Hollywood and also Hollywood films inspired by Indian films.
Apart from that we have production houses with their spread in various countries. This is to do with the globalization of media through gaming, films and music. Media is shared and spread around the world which causes it to become globalized because of the interest from different cultures.