Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)




Faculty of Science

First Advisor

Terry Mitchell

Advisor Role

Thesis Supervisor


Indian women have been experiencing the arranged marriage and dowry system for centuries. The main objective of this study was to explore how television and cinematic programming impact tehse traditional and contextual issues. I used a phenomenological-hermeneutic research methodology, with a feminist pragmatist epistemology. I conducted a total of six personal inteviews with Hindu women from Goa, India. Three participants were married in the 1980s while the other three were married after 2000. Five themes emerged from the interviews that shed some light at the issues under exploration: a) media exposure betwen childhood and marriage; b) love vs. arranged marriage; c) exposure to the dowry system; d) current media exposure of couple; e) nature of interactions with in-laws. Findings indicate drastic differences in media exposure between the two cohorts, which may indicate the difference in how women re-work traditions like the arranged marriage, dowry system, and family interactions. However, regardless of the minor differences between cohorts there appears to be a general acceptance of traditional roles and values across generations. These traditions and values may be deeply entrenched in the community, and possibly reinforced by the patriarchal nature of the media. Furthermore, these values and traditions do not seem easily altered by the few progressive depictions of women in the media. Findings indicate a general belief that the media erodes Indian culture, a belief that is protective and necessary to forestall the perceived problems of the west.

Convocation Year


Included in

Psychology Commons