Monday, May 20, 2013

Cross Cultural Awareness and English 2013 Semester 1 Week 5: Love and Marriage in Bangladesh

Bangladeshi Bride and Groom

Hello everyone, Today we will continue discussing Love and Marriage. Look at the picture above. This is a picture I took of a Bangladeshi bride and groom at a wedding reception I attended in Dhaka, Bangladesh. In the photo below you can see me with my colleagues. The men, including me, are wearing a traditional Bengali shirt called a "panjabi". This shirt is called a Kurta in India. We were a little embarrassed because all the Bangladeshi men wore European business suits. 


Let's listen to two people talking about Love and Marriage in Bangladesh. Some people in Bangladesh have arranged marriages. Let's listen to a conversation about arranged marriages on my friend Todd Beukens' great website English Listening Lesson Library Online (ELLLO). Please listen to the conversation and do the quiz. 

Next, let's study some vocabulary. Please click the link: Cross cultural awareness and English vocabulary.

Now, let's learn more about Bengali weddings. Please click the link. Read the article and answer the questions:

1. What is a Ghotok?
2. What are the parts of the Bengali wedding?
3. What is Gaye holud? 
4. What is the Mahr?
5. Who arranges the wedding ceremony?
6. What do many of the wedding ceremony traditions revolve around?
7. Who arranges the reception?
8. What is the "flower bed" ceremony?

Finally, please leave a comment. What do you think of Bengali wedding traditions?


  1. Anonymous7:33 pm

    As an Australian with Bangladeshi parents and origin, I have to say I do love me a good Bangladeshi wedding.
    I think without reading the article I can answer those questions (but I have an unfair advantage)
    1. A ghotok is usually a religious man like an Imam who arranges marriage between two parties
    2.There are 5 parts in a Muslim wedding. The Engagement, the bride's gaye holud, the grooms gaye holud, the wedding reception and the bou bhat
    3.A gaye holud is an occassion held by both parties where the relatives come and apply a mix of turmeric on the bride/groom's face. it symbolises radiancy in the marriage as turmeric brings a natural glow to people's faces
    4.I actually dont know what a Mahr is -_-
    5. The bride's party
    6. hmm... loove? haha no idea
    7. the reception or "bou bhat" is arranged by the groom's side
    8. its when the bed on which the newly wed couples are going to sleep is decorated with flowers

    I am going to have a helluva time convincing my Lebanese boyfriend to go through all that at our wedding :D

  2. Anonymous7:35 pm

    Also, UNDOUBTEDLY the best part about Bangladeshi wedding from a Bangladeshi perspective is the food and the aunties gossiping about each other's jewellery and sarees. and not to mention the beautiful bride and the shy husband.

    Somehow the wedding is more enticing if it were arranged because you get to meet a WHOLE new family at the wedding :)