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Tuesday, March 31 • 2:30pm - Saturday, March 15 • 2:45pm
Tayelor Valerio: Social Change in Southern India

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India is now in a period of great transition. Independence from Great Britain in 1947 and the persistent influence of Western views through globalization have left the country hungry for change but also committed to retaining its own identity. Home to over one billion people, with roots spreading back to Paleolithic times, it will be fascinating to observe what cultural traditions are adapted, altered, and abandoned as India strives for success in the twenty-first century. This research identifies and discusses the changes occurring to family organizational patterns in rural areas around the megacity of Chennai, India, as a result of education and occupational expansion. Chennai is located in the state of Tamil Nadu, which holds the highest percentage of urban dwellers in the country but is also the most steadfast to its traditions and festivals. To find out how urbanization is affecting the social aspects of villages in the surrounding region, I conducted a three-month study at Sevalaya, a community organization located near Chennai, and collected data on the perceptions of these events held by staff members employed by the organization. Participant observation and qualitative, semi-structured interviews were used to gather data. My results indicate that with the expansion of higher education, a young, divergent, and independent generation is emerging; one that is not satisfied with accepting every cultural practice of their forefathers.


Tuesday March 31, 2015 2:30pm - Saturday March 15, 2031 2:45pm EDT
Civic Center - Meeting Room B - Ground Floor 505 West Pensacola Street, Tallahassee, FL 32301

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