Bhaskar has released a study that offers insights on Rajasthani women and their mindsets. This study is the first in a series of research reports that the Bhaskar Group will be releasing from time to time. The series is branded 'Revelations' and covers areas in the Bhaskar Group's market. The Bhaskar Group will work on other topics of interest to marketers as well. The research study has been conducted by Q Market Research, a division of Quantum Market Research.
Sanjeev Kotnala, associate vice-president and national head of brand communication, Bhaskar Group, says the group spoke to renowned media planners in the industry about the markets that they would like to learn about and help advertisers better address their communication to the audience. The Bhaskar Group started with Rajasthani women because, as a segment, they are less understood by advertisers and understanding them would help design accurate communication for specific brands.
It was found that there have been various changes in the infrastructure of the country, which have supported further transformations in present day Rajasthani woman. All over the country today, the self-worth of women has been enhanced because they have become more economically independent. There is mass mobilisation against the exploitation of women and increasing opportunities for education. The culture has become more relaxed, nuclear families have evolved, and love marriages are being accepted.
Despite all these changes, the women in Rajasthan strongly wish to preserve traditions and values even as they adapt to the new social structures. Although greater freedom of expression is available to Rajasthani women today, they find their culture a part of their daily life rather than an old fashioned burden.
The research study has divided Rajasthani women into three broad categories: the ambivalent, the fusionist and the rooted.
The ambivalent women are conflicted and confused. They are at the crossroads of accepting new influences and new challenges. They are confused because they like some of the past practices, but sometimes find them restrictive as well. They seek guidance to make the right decisions in life. In their pre-marriage days, they have had the opportunity to study further, yet keep family values in mind while pursuing their dreams. They read newspapers, watch TV and listen to radio. Their relationships with their husbands and children are important to them. They want to increase their social circle, but their family takes up a lot of their time.
The fusionist women are balanced and practical. They have high aspirations in life. They are aware of their surroundings and regularly read to keep up with the current scenario. These women want to work, but do not make work a priority. They are critical of practices such as dowry, early marriage and discrimination against the girl child. At the same time, they happily endorse traditional values and belief systems. They believe that with changing times, husbands are changing as well. They desire new experiences without losing out on the old ones. They are smart mothers and educate their children in every aspect.
The rooted women wish to move ahead, but have no way out. They feel that they have always been taken for granted. In their pre-marriage days, they have seen their mothers struggle to establish an identity for themselves and they feel that their own fate is no different. They are constantly vying for space, attention and importance. They believe their lives are circumscribed by the boundaries of their homes. Values and customs have a solid place in their life and govern their existence. They feel women maintain their place in society by maintaining tradition.
The research study concludes that changing infrastructure has impacted the life of women in Rajasthan. There is an evolving mindset due to education, media influence and government policy changes. At the same time, the significant players in women's lives, such as husbands and in-laws, do not seem to be changing as much. Customs have been adopted by them and heritage carried forward with newer influences.