LINGUIST List 12.178

Wed Jan 24 2001

Books: Language & Culture/Discourse Analysis

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  1. tkbhatia, Language & Culture/Discourse Analysis: Advertising in Rural India

Message 1: Language & Culture/Discourse Analysis: Advertising in Rural India

Date: Mon, 8 Jan 2001 10:32:19 -0500 (EST)
From: tkbhatia <>
Subject: Language & Culture/Discourse Analysis: Advertising in Rural India

Advertising in Rural India: Language, Marketing Communication, and
Tokyo Press, Tokyo, Japan. 2000. ISBN 4-87297-782-3.

By: Tej K. Bhatia, Syracuse University, Syracuse, New York 13244. USA.

A dramatic change is in progress. Villagers who used to crack open
peanut M & M candies, eat the nut and throw away the shell are now
demanding chocolate candies that will melt in their mouths, not in
their hands. Charcoal-cleaned teeth are a rare sight; so is the case
with twigs of niim (neem) and babul (babool) tree. Today, the ultra
bright shine of Colgate or some other international brand of
toothpaste holds more appeal than the traditional methods of cleaning
teeth. Even the native expressions of cleaning teeth, such as daatun
karnaa and musaag lagaanaa, are endangered to being replaced by new
expressions such as paste karnaa, 'to brush teeth with
paste'. Consumerism and globalization is invading parts of India
where, as some would venture to say, time seems to have ceased for

These villages and small towns, which were once inconsequential dots
on maps, are now getting the attention of global marketing giants and
media planners. Thanks to globalization, economic liberalization, IT
revolution, Indian diaspora, female power, and improving
infrastructure, middle class rural India today has more disposable
income than urban India. Rural marketing is gaining new heights in
addition to rural advertising.

Rural India represents the heart of India. Approximately 80% of India
lives in over half a million villages (627,000), generating more than
half of the national income. This book explores the formidable
challenges of reaching this magnitude of the rural masses where scores
of official languages and a few hundred rural dialects are
spoken. Based on the interviews with consumers, media giants, and
analysis of case studies, it offers insights into the following:

* Various facets of rural media (conventional and non-conventional)
 and integrated marketing communication. In addition to rural market
 discourse, media forms such as wall paintings, calendar advertising,
 outdoor advertising, print, radio and television advertising.

* Art of crafting messages to meet rural tastes and sensibilities. In
 particular, uniquely Indian media forms such as video van technology,
 which has changed the face of not only marketing but also political

* Rural markets (haat) which are the mobile McDonald's or Walmarts of

* Targeting women and religious groups in addition to rural

* Marketing taboo products such as 'bidi', cigarettes, sanitary
 supplies, and other such products.

* Globalization and its effects on product naming, product monitoring,
 rural discourse and media forms.

* Creativity and deception, together with guidelines for advertisers
 and marketers.

* Information structures and logic of rural ads. 

* Ads as a social barometer of changing relationships and value

This work is the first of its kind, devoted solely to advertising in
rural India. It provides a first-hand look at the dynamics and
complexity of Indian rural media and its interaction with urban media.

For Further information please contact: Institute for the Study of
Lanaguages and Cultures of Asia and Africa, Tokyo University of Foreign
Studies, 4-51-21 Nishigahara, Kita-Ku, Tokyo 114-8580, Japan.

Tej K. Bhatia
Professor of Linguistics
Chancellor's Exceptional Academic Excellence Professor
312 HBC, Syracuse University
Syracuse, New York 13244-1160
Tel: 315-443-5374 (off.)
Fax: 315-443-5376

The above book is published by a non-profitable research Institute
(Institute for the Study of Languages and Cultures of Asia and Africa
[ILCAA], Tokyo University of Foreign Studies, Tokyo, Japan. ILCAA's
publications are complimentary for scholars and researchers. 
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Friday, December 08, 2000