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Institutional and Structural Changes in Pakhtoon Family and Marriage Systems in Kashmir Valley of Jammu and Kashmir, India

Author Affiliations

  • 1Department of Sociology, University of Jammu 180006, Jammu and Kashmir, INDIA

Res. J. Family, Community and Consumer Sci., Volume 1, Issue (9), Pages 1-6, December,27 (2013)


The proposed deliberation attempts to investigate into the socio-cultural changes in the institutions of Family and marriage among Pakhtoons in Kashmir valley of the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir. The vast majority of Pashtuns is found in the traditional Pashtun homeland, located in an area south of the Oxus River in Afghanistan and west of the Indus River in Pakistan, which includes Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) and part of Balochistan. Additional Pashtun communities are located in western and northern Afghanistan, the Gilgit–Baltistan and Kashmir regions and northern Punjab province of Pakistan, as well as in the Khorasan province of Iran. Throughout the Indian subcontinent, excluding Pashtun-dominated regions, they are often referred to as Pathans. Presently Pakhtoons inhabit almost every continent and country of the world since decades. Their long stay in other countries mostly the developed nations have favored the un-avoidable process of change and transformation of the major social institutions of family and marriage. The structural, traditional and cultural changes and transitions with respect to these two institutions are not only a matter of concern in Indian states like Jammu and Kashmir but a global challenge for Pakhtoons. Moreover the tides of globalization and modernization have further intensified the changes in Pakhtoon family and marriage to such an extent that neither of these two social institutions are traditionally intact. The present research paper will thus investigate such institutional changes among the Pakhtoons living in Kashmir since about a century. The study is based on fieldwork conducted in the Valley where it has been concluded that Pakhtoon family and marriage has witnessed structural and institutional changes as well with all such changes been and are still being intensified under the pressures of modernization.


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