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Rituals, festivals, holidays

Tamil Wedding Guests

Informant: My friend’s family is from southern India, and every few years they go back in the summer for family weddings. This past summer she went to three, and recounted some of the traditions for me.
Original Piece: “There’s the engagement, not like a proposal, but the engagement is a ceremony that happens one or two days before the wedding. It’s like the announcement that they’re getting married, but everyone already knows they’re getting married because it’s two days before the wedding. It’s just close friends and family, so it’s the smallest group of people, but still like a hundred people. Then there’s the actual wedding ceremony, because we’re Christian Tamal ours is in a church. Then there’s receptions… usually in the girl’s hometown and the guy’s hometown, so there’s those two. Then there’s…then sometimes there’s another one in another city, like where they went to college. Some people go to all of them, but some people go to just portions of them.
Usually you give an invitation to one person in the family. Like, you send out 300, but 1200 people come. But you plan for 1200 people. And it’s rude to give invitations through the mail if you’re within driving distance. Even if it’s a couple hours away, you need to hand deliver the invitation. Some people have not gone to weddings because they received invitations through the mail.”
Context of Piece: My friend was showing me pictures from this summer, and I asked her to tell me a bit more about their weddings customs.
Thoughts about the Piece: I thought this was interesting, that overall the wedding proceedings could last for days.

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