Sociological Structure Of Kanyadaan

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Kanyadaan—Marriage as Transaction In Water Sidhwa depicts the institution of marriage as one of the primary sources used by the Brahmin patriarchy for the control, exploitation and objectification of women’s bodies in Hindu culture. The social and religious institution of marriage, in its heterosexual form, constitutes the basic structural and functional unit of a Hindu society and has been historically exploited by men for social and economic advantage. Sidhwa brings out the instrumental role played by the institution of marriage in objectifying and exploiting Brahmin women through the marriage of six-year-old Chuyia with Hira Lal, a Brahmin man in his forties. In Hindu culture, the marriage of a daughter is termed kanyadaan, a word which symbolically discloses the underlying socio-cultural construction of a woman’s body through its etymological structure. The Hindi word kanyadaan is made of two words: kanya, which means “a virginal young girl” and daan, which means “to give as gift”, thus, the literal meaning of kanyadaan is “the gifting of a virginal daughter”. In Brahminical patriarchy, kanyadaan offers an excellent legitimate opportunity for the families of the bride and the bridegroom to socially, religiously, and/or economically advance in society. Sidhwa writes about the popular belief in Hindu culture according to which, once a girl/woman is married, her natal family is expected to relinquish their rights over her because being a wife she goes into the

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