Just came upon this article …Very Interesting one.
There is a big, wide, glossy world out there benchpressing our idea of what it means to appear Indian.
From Arunachal Pradesh to Lakshadweep to the Andaman and Nicobar Islands to Himachal Pradesh, Indians look extremely different from each other, our lives are extremely different from each other. But if you were a Martian trying to understand India through popular media you would not see this abundance, and you certainly would not believe Dr Majumdar. A Martian would assume from advertisements that Indians are a nation of tall, fair, Hindu, affluent people who live in cities. A Martian would assume that most Indians are only a hair’s breadth away in appearance from white people.
In India, religious and linguistic identity deeply defines political life. The idea of pretending blindness to identity is absurd. However, Indian popular culture does not reflect our wide differences and is increasingly forcing us to present a uniform formulaic face to the world. And to ourselves. Here are some basic rules to understand who the cloned Indian of popular culture is.
All Indians are north Indian unless proven otherwise.
Of the 28 states and seven union territories of India, the people we see in popular culture are broadly from the Hindi-speaking states. South Indians in advertising land — that fictional universe that dominates our imagination and designs our emotions — speak Brahmin Tamil, bear lavish sandalwood paste marks and speak exclusively in a comic manner. In a country where it is a tired cliché that everyone south of the Vindhyas is Madrasi, large swathes are simply invisible.
All Indians are Hindu unless proven otherwise.
All Indians are fair, except when they don’t try.
All Indians live in cities and are rich.
The world of Indians in popular culture is highly aspirational. From the breakfast counters of advertising land’s imagined kitchens to the models walking down streets with French loaves sticking attractively out of shopping bags, much of Indian advertising is hungry for a global romance.
Indians look exactly like Caucasians.
For the full article go here, http://www.tehelka.com/story_main41.asp?filename=Ne210309coverstory.asp