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Ethnocentrism in India

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Emily Kohut

on 5 November 2013

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Transcript of Ethnocentrism in India

Ethnocentrism in India

Class/ Economy
India is divided into a few different social classes, There are four classes- priests, warriors, merchants, and laborers. People are then divided into the caste system. It basically determines your rank and how wealthy you are. Different classes cannot marry into each other, The lower class is unhappy because their work is like slavery. It is mainly in Hinduism, but has moved into other religions in India.
The economy in India has grown in the past years. It is ranked as the 10th-largest by GDP and the 3rd-largest by PPP. In the independence era, they had a mixed economy which had parts of capitalism and socialism.
The constitution in India gives equal rights to men and women. However, there is still inequality. Men are favored over women. They have a lower status than men. This can be seen as girls grow up. Families with girls will keep having children in order to have a boy. So, girls tend to grow up in larger families. This means less education and less resources for them. There is also sex-selective abortion, with females more likely to be aborted. Women have a lower literacy rate and lower wages. There is a preference for men in India.
India is known as a 'land of religions' since it is the birthplace of Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism, and Sikhism. Islam and Christianity are also practiced. 80.5% of Indians practice Hinduism while 13.4% are Muslim. These two religions have caused tensions within India. The wars between them are an important part of Indian history. Religious riots include the Anti Sikh Riots, Bombay Riots, and the 2013 Muzaffarnager Riots. Religion has also strongly influenced politics.
By Emily Kohut, Period 4
Parallel to The Poisonwood Bible
"We aren't all that accustomed to the African race to begin with, since back home they keep to their own parts of town... I didn't see there was any need for them to be so African about it." -This quote shows the racial issues in the Poisonwood Bible. The Prices looked down on the natives. In India, the British looked down on the Indians. They stayed away from their customs.
"In the end, my lot was cast with the Congo. Poor Congo, barefoot bride of men who took her jewels and promised the Kingdom." -This quote is about how Africa got independence, and thought they would be free. But, America interfered and took it away. In India, they also gained their independence. However, there was still fighting. People saw their own culture as better, with the Hindus and Muslims.
"God says the Africans are the Tribes of Ham. Ham was the worst one of Noah's three boys: Shem, Ham and Japheth... Ham was the youngest one, like me, and he was bad... So Noah cursed all Ham's children to be slaves for ever and ever. That's how come them to turn out dark." -The Prices thought that the natives were bad; that they were savage. They were unimportant to them, at first. In India, women were treated badly after the partition. This is because they are also seen as unimportant.
The Congo and India both gained their independence from European countries. Things didn't work out, though. Fighting occurred within the country. People were divided. They thought the independence was for the best, but it turned out to be not so good. In both places, they lost important leaders. Riots happened, and people died. People with different cultures and a different set of beliefs caused aggressive action.
What happened?
An example of ethnocentrism was the partition of India. They gained independence in 1947 from the British. When they left, they partitioned India, which made it into two countries- India and Pakistan. It caused boundary issues and religious conflict between the Hindus and Muslims.
What caused it?
The British had been ruling India since 1858. The British were distant towards the people and customs of India, though. When they ruled, they kept people separated by religion. They treated them as separate. Because of this, there were ideological differences within the country.
What was the outcome?
The partition caused problems in both countries. In India, it was the cause of a lot of ethnocentrism. It caused riots, murders, rapes, and looting. Because of the religious separation, people fled to different areas in order to try to avoid conflict. At the start of their independence, they had ruined economies and no established government. India also lost leaders like Gandhi.
Who was involved?
The British were involved. So was the Indian National Congress, who protested dividing states. This created the Muslim league, to protect Muslim's rights when discussing independence negotiations. The people who lived in India were affected by their decisions.
Did it result in change?
It resulted in the division of the countries. It affected how they view each other. There are still problems today. However, India is trying to solve caste-based problems and gender inequality with laws. These things came from the partition, and they are working towards fixing them.
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