Appendix B: Interview Questions

These questions were formulated as a common set of basic guidelines for our interviews. However, all our group members went above and beyond these questions, as we wanted to have informative conversations with each other instead of overly structured interviews. Still, we had these questions to provide us with a basic framework, within which we each constructed our own ethnographic analysis.

General personal questions
  • How did your parents meet?
  • At what age did they get married?
  • What did your grandparents think about their marriage?
  • Describe the kind of wedding that they had / community involved?
  • What is your parents’ opinion about your marriage?
  • How much autonomy do you feel that you have when it comes to marriage?
  • What are your beliefs about marriage (age, type of husband etc) ?
  • In your family, what do you feel is the status of women in marriage?
  • What is the relationship between your parents like (more power accorded to one person, or more equal?)

Marriage and Kinship
  • What is the relationship like between your parents and their in-laws?
  • In your family, what is the attitude towards endogamous marriage?

  • What forms of marriage are acceptable in your family?
  • In your family, what is the attitude towards polygamy?
  • In your personal life, have you encountered any examples of non-monogamous relationships?

Marriage and Sexuality
  • How much emphasis does your family place on qualities like virginity and modesty?
  • How open are you and your family members in talking about sex?
  • How much do you think your family’s reputation depends upon your behaviour in marriage?

Divorce and Remarriage
  • How common is divorce in your family?
  • What is your own opinion about divorce?
  • What is your parents’ opinion about divorce?
  • In your family, what would usually be the reasons for divorce?
  • Is there any social stigma attached to divorce in your family?
  • Who usually initiates it and how hard is it to initiate?
  • What is the attitude towards remarriage in your family?
  • In your personal experience, do you know anyone who is remarried?

The Economics of Marriage
  • What gifts do people generally give during weddings (that you have attended)?
  • How are properties, finances, bank accounts etc managed within marriage?
  • How would YOU want to manage finances in your marriage?
  • What is the general opinion regarding dowry in your family?
  • In your family, what is the appropriate amount of money to be spent on the wedding ceremony itself?

Some concluding questions
  • Broadly speaking, are there any unique marriage practices or beliefs in your family? And if so, what are they?
  • Do you feel that marriage practices in your family are changing with modern times?
  • What do you feel is the overall function of marriage? Does this differ from what your parents think?

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