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Ethnic Groups In Malaysian Culture Cultural Studies Essay

Paper Type: Free Essay Subject: Cultural Studies
Wordcount: 1497 words Published: 1st Jan 2015

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Indians are the smallest of the three main ethnic groups in Malaysia. They migrated from southern India to Malaysia during the British colonization. Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism and Sikhism known as Indian religions and bring from India to Malaysia. The Indians who come to Malaysia brought with them the Hindu culture with its unique temples, delicious cuisine and meaningful garments. Religion and culture plays an important and definitive role in their life. Therefore, the India cultural value has impact Indian consumer deeply.

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Indian consumers are famous with the high degrees of value orientation and family orientation. Some of the value as identified Indian as one of the most analytical and good judgment consumer in the world. These orientations enlarge to extended family and friends. Most of the exclusive brands create a special marketing strategic in order to get a foothold in the Indian market. Those brand that suitable family values tend to be famous and adopted easier in the Indian market.

The values of caring and nurturing are related with Indian consumers. These values of ambition and achievement are dominant by these values. Indian consumers prefer those products which can convey their feeling and emotions. Due to the psychology and economics, history and tradition is plays an important role in shaping the Indian consumer behavior becomes unique and special. Indians are more prefer traditional products than the modern products. For example, shampoos together with hair oils and toothpowder existing with toothpaste.

In the Indian culture, they emphasize the segmentation and classification among them. They can categorize into societies and conservations. For the societies, it is belong to the upper class. They like to spend an amount of money on luxury goods, shop in specialty stores and go to clubs on weekends. They prefer the products that are unique and different with others. They are lovers of exclusive establishment and always go for the high value products. Socialites are also would only go for the well-known products in the market because they are brand conscious.

The conservations belong to the middle class. The true Indian culture can reflects by the conservative segment. They are traditional in their outlooks; spend more time with family rather than in partying and concentrate on savings than spending. They seek a lot of information before they make any purchases or decision making. Most of them prefer high value products, but often have to choose the more affordable one. Therefore, it can influence their purchasing habits where they are trying to purchases the middle and upper middle level priced products.

The food in Indian cuisine is classified into three categories which are Sattva, Rajas and Thamas. Sattva which stand for balance, Rajas stands for passion and Thamas stands for indulgence. Food is consumed according to the lifestyle of the people. When a person wants his life lead to self realization, he would prefer the Satvic food which can help him keep his mind in balance. Thamasic food which known as Static food is to be taken only if its required such as consumption of alcohol. This is also the reason why many Indians like to abstain drinking.

Indians are the community who like to use the spices and herbs to cook their daily meals as well as in festivals. Multiple uses of spices and herbs are the need in food preparation and are used to enrich the flavor of a dish and create special flavors and tastes. Most of them expert in using the spices to cook various type of curry such as chicken curry and mutton curry. Therefore, they buy many kinds of spices as flavor in their homemade dishes. Due to the fact, most of the demand of spices in market is purchased by the Indian consumers rather than other ethnic groups.

For clothing, the famous styles of dress include draped garments such as dhoti or lungi for men and sari for women. In addition, Indian community also famous in wearing stitched clothes such as kurta-pyjama and European-style shirts and trousers for men and churidar for women. In Indian culture, a person’s social status is symbolized by his or her attire and appearance. For the Indian dress etiquette, it discourages the exposure of skin and wearing those clothes that are transparent or tight. Most Indian clothes are made by cotton due to the fact of hot weather. So, Indian consumers are more likely to patronize tailor shops to stitch their attires. Besides that, Indians do not like those clothes that are black in color and for the person who widowed, they prefer those clothes that are white in color.

Furthermore, the wedding rituals and clothes are the most important things for the Indians wedding. For the guests that attending to the wedding, they also dressed up to the teeth, but not just the couple. The folks attending the marriage are decked up with gold jewelry including the bride and groom. Both look excellent and grand in their gorgeous clothes. The ladies are beautifying with Henna patterns all over their palms, hands, forearms, legs and feet. Due to the different rituals and the various attires, Indian consumers choose the clothes and products that need in the wedding carefully.

Malaysia is a country that is well known with its rich and cultural heritage. Living in a multiethnic society, it contains various types of religions and cultures. The cultural values of each ethnic groups was impact themselves deeply in their buying behavior. For the Malay consumers, their cultural values based on sociological and anthropological. Their purchases decisions are more concerned about others than themselves. In the other hand, Chinese are more likely to the concept of ‘face’. They bought the product that can represent their high social status and family’s name. Besides that, tradition and customs of Indian has influence them in their purchases behavior. They more prefer the traditional products than modern product.

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Indian cultures are influencing the Malay and Chinese ethnicin buying behavior and not just only Indian community. Those influences can see through various kinds of perspectivein Malay and Chinese ethnic such as their lifestyle, eating behavior and attire. Due to fact that every ethnic’s cultures are unique, they can accept other’s cultures easily. Therefore, Malay and Chinese community are learning and absorbing the Indian cultures in their daily lifestyle.

In the Indian cultures, they like to use the spices and herb to enhance the taste and flavor of their dish as well as in the festival. The delicious of Indian foods has attracts the Malay and Chinese learn to use the spices and herb in their cooks. Nowadays, the meals in Malay and Chinese community also consist along with the spices and herb. For example, we can see through the ‘Mamak’ stalls, most of the dishes such as fried chicken and chicken curry are cook with spices.

Indians are also the community that likes to eat spicy food. Coriander, cumin, turmeric and curry feature heavily in dishes along with rich ingredients such as yoghurt and chili. The best way to describe Indian dishes is elaborate, fragrant and hot. The cooking behavior of Indians has impact Malay and Chinese ethnic in their diet and dishes too. They start to learn to eat the spicy food and now, most of them are expert in eating spicy food such as mutton curry and tandoori chicken.

For perspective of attire, henna is a type of body art in Indian culture. It is used in creating contemporary designs and exotic patterns on various parts of the body. For the special ceremonies such as wedding, henna is traditionally applied to the hands and feet of women to enhance their beauty. It is completely natural and painless. Nowadays, henna is the modern design among the Malay and Chinese ethnic which applied as a part of their fashion and trend as well the accessories to hands or feet.

Besides that, Indian culture will also influence Malay and Chinese consumers in behavior of buying gold. Indian is the one of the largest amount of the customer in purchasing gold among the nations. The attitude of Indians wearing the gold as one part of their accessories has also influence Malay and Chinese consumers to buy the gold jewelry. Nonetheless, they will also buy the gold to decorate their house and room. Besides that, another purpose the Chinese buying the gold is to resell it to get the profit.

The cultural values of the ethnic in Malaysia not just only impact their own community but also influence each other in buying behavior. Most of the influences can look at the perspective of eating behavior, costume, festival custom and their living lifestyle. Although Malaysia consists different cultural values but every ethnic is willing to learn about it. They can tolerate properly in their daily lifestyle until now.


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