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CULTURE OF BANGLADESH

Introduction We are living in the modern state of Bangladesh that is now developing fast. Can you think of what the states of the undivided Bengal society? Would have been five hundred years ago! It is for sure that the social and cultural situation of Bengal in the Mughal period was somewhat different. hen British ruler came in Bengal. In British period Bengal was not separated. In Mughal period Bengal was not an independent and separate country too. !ather the region became a province under "elhi. In the Mughal period direct communication with #orth India was established. $lso relations grew with middle and western $sia and outside India. $s a result% the people of Bengal came into direct contact with thoughts and ideas% and behaviors of people of different countries. hese had profound impact on different aspects in their lives% including their dressing pattern and food habit% education% religion% art and architecture among others.

Culture in Mughal Bengal Babur was the founder of the Mughal &mpire in undivided Bengal. "uring his time Bangla was not con'uered. he Mughals always looked after the welfare of the sub(ects. he provincial administrators also shared the similar attitude. hat is why peace and happiness prevailed at that time. his resulted in the "evelopment in every field of education% culture and economy. he influence of the Mughals could be observed in the daily life of the people. Dre he dress and attire of the rich )indus and the *amindars began to change remarkably. hey began to like the Mughal dress. +rnamented and pearl,studded glittering% dress% -salwar. and -kami/. adorned the )indus and the Muslims alike. In the Mughal $ge% the rich and middle class women wore attractive dresses. hey used to go out sometimes in 0alaan'uins. he condition of the villagers was not very good. hey wore normal dresses and wooden sandals. Food aste in food items changed. -1abab. -!e/ala.% -1orma. and other Mughal foods took their places beside the usual fish% rice and vegetables of the Bengalis. Language $lthough 0ersian was the dominant and 2official3 language of the empire% the language of the elite later evolved into a form of )industani today known as 4rdu. )ighly 0ersonali/ed and also influenced by $rabic and urkic% the language was written in a type of 0erso,$rabic script known as #astali'% and with literary conventions and speciali/ed vocabulary being retained from 0ersian% $rabic and urkic5 the new dialect was eventually given its own name of 4rdu. Compared with )indi% the 4rdu language draws more vocabulary from 0ersian and $rabic 6via 0ersian7 and 6to a much lesser degree7 from urkic languages where )indi draws vocabulary from 8anskrit more heavily. Modern )indi% which uses 8anskrit,based vocabulary along with 4rdu loan words from 0ersian and $rabic% is mutually intelligible with 4rdu. Education and Literature In the Mughal $ge too% like the $ge of the 8ultans% there was a remarkable "evelopment in education and literature. he employees recruited in the period were highly educated. hey had

great passion for learning. 0eople of different professions like poets% teachers% doctors% etc. came with them. Conse'uently% their influence and endeavors greatly helped the advancement of education in Bengal. he !evenue Minister !a(a odarmal of &mperor $kbar introduced. 0ersian language in government offices. $kbar helped a lot for the spread of education. 9or this reason the language and literature developed considerably in Bengal during the Mughal period. Both the )indus and Muslims learnt 0ersian to get government (obs. hese 0ersian knowing officials were called -Munshis.. he books of the famous 0ersian poet 8heikh 8aadi were very popular in this country at that time. he #awabs and 8ubadars like 1asim 1han% 8hah 8hu(a% Mir :umla% 8hayesta 1han and Murshid 1uli 1han worked a lot to develop the 0ersian language. he influence of the 0ersian language on Bengali literature during the Mughal period can very well be observed. 0ersian is an affluent language. When the influence of a rich language falls on another language% the grandeur of the latter is enhanced. he same happened in the case of the Bengali language too. he Bengali language began to brighten in following the sub(ect and style of the 0ersian language. ;radually the use of 0ersian words in Bangla began to increase. he Bengali Muslims began to introduce ideas and thoughts of 0ersian literature in their poems. ;a/als and 8ufi literature began to be evolved bearing likeness to 0ersian literature. he )indu poets were inspired by the 8anskrit literature instead of 0ersian. #evertheless% many of them could not avoid the 0ersian influence. he <aishmava 0adabali was composed following the 0ersian style. he influence of the 0ersian literature can be observed in the writing of the authors like Bharata Chandra !aigunakar% etc. he Baul songs developed in Bengal during the Mughal rule. he poets at that time composed mourning songs of the Muharram also. Religion In the Mughal $ge all people could follow their respective religions independently. he concept of Islam in the worship of $llah% e'uality and brotherhood greatly influenced the people of the country. here was a reaction among the )indus for this. 8ome changes in the )indu society followed conse'uently. he influence of -<aishnava. Movement of 8ree Chaitnya was reflected in the social and religious life of the )indus from the $ge of the 8ultans. his increased further in the Mughal $ge. he common people began to accept the cult of devotion and spirit of e'uality. he orthodo= Brahmins were deeply hurt at this. he common )indus opposed the religion of the orthodo= )indus and gave their attention to the worship of Mansha% Chandi etc. $ mi=ed variety of 8ufism emerged out of combination of the doctorine of Bhakti of Bengal with the 8ufism of 0ersia during the Mughal period. In the way% 9a'iri% "arves.hi% Baul and other mystic doctorines originated. Architecture and !ainting Many beautiful buildings were built all over India during the $ge of the Mughals. 9rom "elhi and $gra% almost everywhere% there are specimens of Mughal architecture. #ot only the &mperors but also the Mughal 8ubadars and high officers encouraged architecture greatly. hat is why architecture flourished profusely during the Mughal period. he Muslim architecture differed from the )indu architecture. ;enerally speaking% Muslim architecture implies mos'ues% Idgahs% forts% mausoleums% monumenst etc. he design and beauty of the architecture of the Mughal $ge differed from that of the other ages. he Mughal rulers did not like the architecture of the 8ultani period in Bengal. he domes of the mos'ues of the Mughal period were matched. he surface of the domes were decorated with mosaic. he sides of the arches were decorated with floral designs. he pinnacles of the domes were long and pointed. he walls of the mos'ues were ornamented with floral designs. he si/e and shape of the buildings in Mughal period were big and massive. 8ome big -daraw(as. 6doors7 were built in Bengal during the Mughal $ge. $lso

some buildings called -katra. were built in the Mughal $ge. hese were guest houses. $ -katra.% a tall minaret and a mos'ue were built in old Maldah during the time of &mperor $kbar. Many important buildings in the Mughal age were built in "haka. 8ubadar Islam 1han established the capital in "haka during the period of &mperor :ahangir. Mughal architecture started to develop in "haka from that time. 8ubadar 8hah(ada $/am built some buildings in "haka. )e built a huge -katra. on the bank of the river Buriganga. he -8hahi Mas(id. in >albagh was built in his time. )e started constructing the >albagh 9ort. 8ubadar 8hayesta 1han took steps to complete it. But he could not be complete it. $s a result% the construction of the >albagh 9ort remained incomplete. his fort is the greatest e=ample of Mughal architecture in Bengal. he mausoleum of the daughter of 8hayesta 1han% 0aribibi% is inside the fort. It is an attractive specimen of the Mughal architecture. he grave lies in the centre of the mausoleum and was made of marble stone. he floral designs are found on this grave. $part from this% another structure called -Choto 1atra. was built in the time of 8hayesta 1han. he name of 8hayesta 1han is associated with the mos'ue of Chowkba/aar% the mos'ue on the bank of the !iver Buriganga and the -8aat ;ombu/ Mos'ue.. Many buildings were also built during the period of the #awabs in Bengal. he *in(ira 0alace is their achievement. "uring the time of Murshid 1uli 1han the capital was transferred from "haka to Murshidabad. Many buildings were built there during that time. Murshid 1uli 1han built a katra and a mos'ue. $ 0alace named -Chehel 8etun. was built during his period. It was a huge -"arbar. 6assembly7 building. $part from these establishments% many -&idgahs.% -)ammam 1hana.% -Chillakhana. and bridges were made during the Mughal period. Culture in Briti h "eriod Impact of British rule in India had been widespread throughout the country and affected the cultural% technological% religious% social% political and economic state of India. India had tenaciously tolerated the British rule for ?@@ prolonged years% with their everlasting impression been forever etched upon the succeeding Indian citi/ens. Impact of British rule in India% in this conte=t% is one that had perhaps emerged forth right from the ABth century% when British missionaries had sailed to eastern soil to spread Christianity% much before the &ast India Company. here always e=ists a bright side to every dark silhouette5 hence% impact of British rule upon India and Indians both constitutes superior and appalling elements% still in use in present times. Food he period of the British rule in India and the love affair of the &nglish with Indian food. his generally was hardly a glorified period in Indian history% but the British loved the general elaborate way of eating and adapted several of the food choices to their taste and developed the 2curry3 as a simple spice to help them cook Indian spice. his period resulted in the emergence of the $nglo, Indian cuisine and the emergence of certain 2!a(3 traditions like that of 2high,tea3 an elaborate late afternoon meal served with tea. Religiou Main religions were )induism% Islam% Christian. But impact of British rule in India already had begun to do its work% with the very first Christian missionaries arriving to India% with the intention to turn a ma(ority of population into Christians. hey tried to cast Christianity in the light of a better religion and with economic inducements convinced the poor Indians into Christianity. British established the Christian missionary 8chool to increase the Christianity in India. he very foremost impact of British rule on India was the religious impact% as was established by the missionaries and their establishment of churches in every possible corner of the country. In this

regard% the port cities like 1olkata% Mumbai and Chennai gained enough importance% due to their accessibility for navigational purposes. Language &nglish was made the official language and several traditional )indu customs were outlawed. "ue to a bloody Indian rebellion in ACDE% political power was transferred from the &ast India Company directly to the British Crown and the company dissolved. But people of British Bengal talked in Bangla and other local languages. Socio#Cultural he socio,cultural impact of British rule upon India was also another intense impression that had lasted throughout their rule% never for once losing their significant status. 9rom every field of living% be it in education% art% architecture% painting% literature% poetry% drama% novels or even Indian religion and philosophy% the whole Indian set,up had suffered a gradual change. Art 8culpture during early British rule was perhaps the most telling and e=cellent work of art that attracted numerous Indians and &nglish alike. Church and finery works were primarily looked after% including perfect carvings of funeral epitaphs. :ust like in other spheres% &nglish sculptors also arrived in India in search of regal sponsorship and make their talent known to people on the other side of the globe. Benevolent British officers inaugurated a passionate theme of work% at times even dedicated to Indian men. War was also a common theme% which made way for these sculptors to render masterpiece work. #atural history and art during British rule in India was momentous for its scholarly attempts by &nglishmen to educate Indians in science% plant and animal life. $rt had developed through such attempts% like painting by noted &nglish people% resolved to make an educative endeavour in India. "issertation papers had come up from British scholars% alongside naturalistic paintings and further enhancement of flora and fauna. !ainting 0ainting during early British rule in India was the result of an umpteen number of &nglishmen coming to India in search proper ground to paint% perfect +riental surroundings and royal sponsorship. hese painters were to become famous during their lifetime% with a wide Indian acceptance. Initial works were begun with engravings% later to be substituted with oil paintings% especially portraits. 0ainters and their pri/ed collection of paintings during early British rule in India was something that Indians during that time could feel proud of. he times were still untouched by the malicious motives of the &ast India Company or even later strife issues. $s such% Indians and &nglishmen mingled to give life to brilliant paintings% both indoors and outdoors% evident from their delicate brush strokes.

Architecture $rchitecture during early British rule in India comprised colossal stone and wood structures% erected during the AEth century. In the emerging stages% British viceroy,generals like !obert Clive managed huge efforts to build such architectural wonders in the essential port cities of India. &arly British architectural design composed of charts and outlined plans already erected successfully back in &ngland. his period witnessed the shipping of skilled British architects and young men% e'uipped with clever motives to make Indian artistic design much like western modes. Indian educated class or the comparatively poorer class did not possess the amount of talent that their &nglish masters

were looking for. $s such% architectures were planned by the already utilised British structural wonders. Main $e ti%al Certain festivals in India are celebrated by multiple religions. #otable e=amples include "iwali% which is celebrated by )indus% 8ikhs and :ains% and Buddh 0urnima% celebrated by Buddhists and )indus. Islamic festivals% such &id ul,9itr% &id al,$dha and !amadhan% are celebrated by Muslims across India. Theatre heater in India under British rule gained a global contour. It is during this time theater in India came into a direct contact with the western theater. It is during this ?@@ years of British rule Indian drama became lot more contemporary and naturalistic. ;one are the days of eposes% epics and 2>oknatya3 F theater in India under British rule for the very first time geared up fully towards a systematic and natural presentation. India% as a colony of the &uropean empire used theater to illustrate the likings% dislikings of the British ra(. he stylistic approach of theater in India under British rule changed 'uite drastically and the presentation started focusing mainly on the day to day life and common people. Culture in !re ent Banglade h Mu ic& dance& dra'a and $il' he music and dance styles of Bangladesh may be divided into three categories% classical% folk and modern. he classical style has been influenced by other prevalent classical forms of music and dances of the Indian subcontinent% and accordingly show some influences dance forms like Bharata #atyam and 1uchipudi. he folk and tribal music and dance forms of Bangladesh are of indigenous origin and rooted to the soil of Bangladesh. 8everal dancing styles in vogue in the north,eastern part of the Indian subcontinent% like Monipuri and 8antal dances% are also practiced in Bangladesh% but Bangladesh has developed its own distinct dancing styles. Bangladesh has a rich tradition of folk songs% with lyrics rooted into vibrant tradition and spirituality% mysticism and devotion. 8uch folk songs also revolve round several other themes% including love themes. Most prevalent of folk songs and music traditions include Bhatiali% Baul% Marfati% Murshidi and Bhawaiya. >yricists like >alon 8hah% )ason !a(a% 1angal )arinath% !omesh 8hill% $bbas 4ddin and many unknown anonymous lyrists have enriched the tradition of folk songs of Bangladesh. In relatively modern conte=t% !abindra 8angeet and #a/rul geeti form precious cultural heritage of Bangladesh. In recent time% western influences have given rise to several 'uality rock bands% particularly in urban centers like "haka. 8everal musical instruments% some of them of indigenous origin% are used in Bangladesh% and ma(or musical instruments used are bamboo flute 6banshi7% drums 6dhol7% a single stringed instrument named ektara% a four stringed instrument called dotara% a pair of metal bawls used for rhythm effect called mandira. Currently% several musical instruments of western origin like guitar% drums% and sa=ophone are also used% sometimes alongside the traditional instruments. Language $lthough there are GC different languages of Bangladesh% Bengali is by far the most widely spoken language in the country F an estimated HCI of the population can speak it% and it en(oys the status of official language and the lingua franca of the nation. $rabic te=t is widely used in education. &nglish is also widely used% especially in urban areas. Fe ti%al and cele(ration 9estivals and celebrations are integral part of the culture of Bangladesh. 0rominent and widely celebrated festivals are 0ohela Baishakh% Independence day% #ational Mourning "ay% &id,ul,9itr% &id,ul,$/ha% Muharram% "urga pu(a% and >anguage Movement "ay.

)edding $ traditional wedding is arranged by ;hotoks 6matchmakers7% who are typically friends or relatives of the couple. he matchmakers facilitate the introduction% and also help agree the amount of any settlement. Bengali weddings are traditionally in five partsJ first it is the bride and groom.s Mehendi 8hondha%the bride.s ;aye )olud% the groom.s ;aye )olud% the Beeya and the Bou Bhaat. hese often take place on separate days. he first event in a wedding is an informal oneJ the groom presents the bride with a ring marking the 2engagement3 which is gaining popularity. 9or the mehendi shondha the bride.s side apply henna to each other as well as the bride 9or the bride.s ;aye )olud% the groom.s family F e=cept the groom himself F go in procession to the bride.s home.Bride.s friends and family apply turmeric paste to her body as a part of ;aye )oof bride% and they are traditionally all in matching clothes% mostly orange in colour. he bride is seated on a dais% and the henna is used to decorate the bride.s hands and feet with elaborate abstract designs. he sweets are then fed to the bride by all involved% piece by piece. he actual wedding ceremony 2Biye3 follows the ;aye )olud ceremonies. he wedding ceremony is arranged by the bride.s family. +n the day% the younger members of the bride.s family barricade the entrance to the venue% and demand a sort of admission charge from the groom in return for allowing him to enter. he bride and groom are seated separately% and a 1a/i 6authori/ed person by the govt. to perform the wedding7% accompanied by the parents and a Wakil 6witness7 from each side formally asks the bride for her consent to the union% and then the groom for his. he bride.s side of the family tries to play some kind of practical (oke on the groom such as stealing the groom.s shoe. he reception% also known as Bou,Bhaat 6reception7% is a party given by the groom.s family in return for the wedding party. It is typically a much more rela=ed affair% with only the second,best wedding outfit being worn. Ga'e and S"ort 9ootball% cricket and kabaddi. 1abaddi is the national sport of Bangladesh. Cricket is a game which has a massive and passionate following in Bangladesh. Bangladesh has (oined the elite group of countries eligible to play est cricket since ?@@@. he Bangladesh national cricket team goes by the nickname of the igersKafter the !oyal Bengal iger. he people of Bangladesh en(oy watching live sports. Whenever there is a cricket or football match between popular local teams or international teams in any local stadium significant number of spectators gather to watch the match live. he people also celebrate ma(or victories of the national team with a great enthusiasm for the live game. <ictory processions are the most common element in such celebrations. $ former prime minister even made an appearance after an international one day cricket match in which Bangladesh beat $ustralia% she came to congratulate the victory. $lso in late ?@@BLearly ?@@E% football legend *inedine *idane paid a visit to local teams and various events thanks to the invite of #obel 0eace 0ri/e winner "r. Muhammad Munus. Religion in Banglade h Bangladesh is ethnically homogeneous% with Bengalis comprising HCI of the population. he ma(ority of Bangladeshis 6about H@I7 are Muslims% and a small number of )indus% Christians and Buddhists are also in the country. But due to immense cultural diversity% multiple dialects% hybridi/ation of social traits and norms as well as cultural upbringing% Bangladeshis cannot be stereotyped very easily% e=cept for the only fact that they are very resilient in nature. 0eople of different religions perform their religious rituals with festivity in Bangladesh. he ;overnment has declared #ational )olidays on all important religious festivals of the four ma(or religions. "urga 0u(a% Christmas and Buddha 0urnima are celebrated with enthusiasm in Bangladesh. $ll of these form an integral part of the cultural heritage of Bangladesh. 8ee also NIslam in Bangladesh N)induism in Bangladesh NChristianity in Bangladesh NBuddhism in Bangladesh

Food 0anta Ilish F a traditional platter of 0anta bhat with fried )ilsa slice% supplemented with dried fish 68hutki7% pickles 6$char7% dal% green chillies and onion F is a popular serving for the 0ohela Boishakh festival.

Bangladesh is famous for its distinctive culinary tradition% and delicious food% snacks and savories. Boiled rice constitutes the staple food% and is served with a variety of vegetables% fried as well as curries% thick lentil soups% and fish and meat preparations of mutton and chicken% and more rarely pork and beef by certain groups. 8weetmeats of Bangladesh are mostly milk based% and consist of several delights including !oshgulla% 8andesh% !asamalai% ;ulap :amun% 1alo :amun% Chom Chom. 8everal other sweet preparations are also available. Bengali cuisine is rich and varied with the use of many speciali/ed spices and flavours. 9ish is the dominant source of protein% cultivated in ponds and fished with nets in the fresh,water rivers of the ;anges delta. More than forty types of mostly freshwater fish are common% including carp varieties like rui 6rohu7% katla% magur 6catfish7% chingOi 6prawn or shrimp7% as well as shuPki 6dried sea fish7. 8alt water fish 6not sea fish though7 Ilish 6hilsa ilisha7 is very popular among Bengalis% can be called an icon of Bengali cuisine. Dre #ation dresses of Bangladesh are for men 0an(abi and 0a(amas and women Bangladeshi people have uni'ue dress preferences. Bangladeshi men wear 1urta on cultural occasions% lungi as casual wear and shirt,pant on formal occasions. 8alwar 8haree are the main dresses of Bangladeshi women. Weaving the fabric for these traditional art in Bangladesh. Conclu ion In conclusion we can say that there many changes occur in different part of culture in Bengal from Mughal Bengal to today.s culture in Bangladesh. >ike official language was 4rdu in Mughal period% in British period it was &nglish% now official language is Bangla. Besides foods items was different in three periods such as in Mughal foods were -1abab. -!e/ala.% -1orma. and other Mughal foods took their places beside the usual fish% rice and vegetables of the Bengalis% he period of the British rule in India and the love affair of the &nglish with Indian food and today rice% fish% meat% vegetable% and other delicious foods like fast food% cakes etc. In addition% dresses were different in three periods like in Mughal period people wore wooden sandals but it does not put on it. Moreover% we notice the differentiation in different parts of culture like games and sports% Music% dance% drama and film % 9estivals and celebrations% marriage ceremony% $rchitecture etc in Bengal from Mughal periods to present culture. for sharee. religious and 1amee/ and dresses is a