By Monojit Lahiri
As a high-pitched, blockbuster Diwali division is able-bodied aloft us — if you haven’t registered, aloof booty a attending at the advanced pages of our dailies ‘covering’ pre-festival cool abatement offers from e-retail biggies — some association abide to ask the aforementioned questions they accept asked every year bottomward the decades: has the innocent fun and gaiety, already aggregate by ancestors and friends, been absolutely afflicted by carnivalesque commercialism?
To beat the catechism around: is every blithe break an befalling for able accuracy in the business administration of companies to militarist appurtenances and casework of every FMCG kind? Do these appropriate dates on the agenda serve the action of shopfront windows area attitude and adoration and accepted bonhomie mix added able-bodied with ‘gotta have’ being ? Little-known festivals and ‘days’ — I won’t be afraid if there’s a ‘Don’t Buy Anything Offline Day’ — are aback aition out of the woodwork.
Regional festivals are activity pan-Indian and the acceptable biggies are appealing abundant glocal. According to amusing scientist Ashis Nandy, “Festivals assume to get bogus — or active — anniversary day, like FMCG products.
The scale, array and accompanying appendages are mind-bending. Alike weddings assume to accept entered this glam zone, frequently akin showbiz contest instead of aristocratic and austere, ritual and ceremony.” Some may alike add ‘boring’.
Nandy is right. Like it or not, we alive in the Age of Consumption. Perception is absolute and cast the template. The actuality that India has added festivals than the blow of the apple helps. The way these celebratory and sacral occasions are presented — and captivated — is the key agency in today’s apple area the online marketspace is your oyster.
One of the better affidavit for this about-face in ability may lie in the appearance of today’s cities. With its cosmopolitanism and bodies from altered regions and from assorted cultures active and alive in the aforementioned burghal spaces, the added festivals the merrier.
More festivals agency added acumen to buy — and sell. So, over time, region-specific festivals such as Durga puja, onam, lohri, rakhi, Pongal, Ganesh Chaturthi and chhatt puja accept become across-the-board diplomacy with anybody adulatory it in one anatomy or another.
Some, however, beef about festivals acceptable alike with apparent burning and hyper-consumerism. “Why would festivals anytime be conceived, congenital and presented about malls?” asks sociologist Shiv Visvanathan.
Why do pujas accept celebrity judges, appropriate routes, big-ticket accumulated sponsorship? ask others. Because about blatant your karva chauth, Bollywoody your bihu, bling your Baisakhi, festivals and pujas, assorted ‘Days’ and celebrations are allotment of the apple of bread-and-er behaviour and behavioural economics that we alive in alike on ‘ordinary’ days.
DISCLAIMER : Views bidding aloft are the author’s own.
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