Pakistan’s civil society is primarily hierarchical, with local cultural etiquette and traditional Islamic norms guiding personal and political life. The extended family is the most basic family unit, but for socioeconomic reasons, there has been a rising tendency toward nuclear families. The Shalwar Kameez is the traditional clothing for both men and women; males also wear pants, jeans, and shirts. In recent decades, the middle class has grown to about 35 million people, while the upper and upper-middle classes have grown to roughly 17 million people, and power has shifted from rural landowners to urban elites. Eid-ul-Fitr, Eid-ul-Azha, Ramazan, Christmas, Easter, Holi, and Diwali are all religious celebrations in Pakistan. Pakistan is ranked 56th on the A.T. Kearney/FP Globalization Index as a consequence of increased globalization.
Clothing, arts, and fashion
The Shalwar Kameez is Pakistan’s national garment, worn by men and women alike in all four provinces: Punjab, Sindh, Balochistan, and Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, as well as FATA and Azad Kashmir. The Shalwar Kameez is worn differently in each region. Pakistanis dress in a variety of styles and colors, as well as different fabrics (silk, chiffon, cotton, etc). Men in the country wear locally designed suits and neckties in addition to the national dress, and it is common at workplaces, schools, and other important venues and social events.
In the ever-changing fashion world, the fashion business has done very well. Pakistan’s fashion has developed through many stages since its inception, giving it a distinct character distinct from Indian fashion and culture. Pakistani fashion is now a mix of traditional and contemporary garments, and it has established the country’s cultural identity. Despite contemporary trends, regional and traditional clothing has acquired its own importance as a representation of indigenous culture. This regional style isn’t stagnant; it’s developing into more contemporary, pure forms. Fashion Week is organized by the Pakistan Fashion Design Council in Lahore, while Fashion Pakistan in Karachi hosts fashion displays. In November 2009, Pakistan’s first fashion week took place.
Role of women in Pakistani society
Due to unequal socioeconomic growth and the effect of social formations on women’s life in Pakistan, women’s social standing varies and is heavily influenced by social class, upbringing, and regional difference. Since its inception, Pakistan has had a long history of female activism. The APWA and the Aurat Foundation, two powerful feminist groups, have been in the forefront of raising awareness of women’s rights in the nation since 1947. Begum Rana’a, Benazir Bhutto, Malala Yousafzai, and Kalsoom Nawaz have all had a significant impact on Pakistan’s feminist culture. Women’s position has improved in general as a result of increased religious and educational knowledge. In terms of the worldwide average, though, the situation is very concerning. Pakistan was rated as the world’s second worst nation for gender equality by the World Economic Forum in 2014.
Women’s relationships with men and women of the opposing gender are culturally gender subordinated. In contrast to males who are the family’s breadwinners and professionals, women have specific presumed and assigned responsibilities relating to domestic chores. In contrast, more and more women are taking professional positions and contributing to family finances in the country’s metropolitan regions, although the ratio of these women to those in conventional roles is much lower. Teaching and tutoring are two of the most popular professions for ladies in society. Educational possibilities for Pakistani women have improved over time as a result of increasing public awareness. The provincial parliament of Pakistan’s Punjab province approved the “Punjab Protection of Women Against Violence Bill 2015” on February 24, 2016, which protects women against a variety of offenses, including cybercrime, domestic violence, emotional, economic, and psychological abuse.
Media and entertainment
Until the twenty-first century, the main media channels were private print media, state-owned Pakistan Television Corporation (PTV), and Pakistan Broadcasting Corporation (PBC) for radio. Pakistan currently has a significant domestic private news media and television channel network that operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week. According to a 2016 Reporters Without Borders study, Pakistan is rated 147th on the Press Freedom Index, with the Pakistani media being “among the freest in Asia when it comes to reporting political squabbles.” The Pakistani media, according to the BBC, is “among the most vocal in South Asia.”
Karachi, Lahore, and Peshawar are home to Lollywood, an Urdu, Punjabi, and Pashto film industry. While Bollywood films were prohibited from public theaters from 1965 to 2008, they continued to have a significant cultural impact. In contrast to the struggling film industry, Urdu television dramas and theatrical performances are popular, with the series being broadcast on a regular basis by a variety of entertainment outlets. Since the 1990s, Urdu dramas have dominated the television entertainment business, debuting highly acclaimed miniseries and starring well-known actors and actresses. Pop music and disco (1970s) dominated the country’s music business in the 1960s and 1970s. British-influenced rock music emerged in the 1980s–1990s, jolting the country’s entertainment sector. Heavy metal music gained popularity and critical praise in the 2000s.
Pakistani music encompasses a wide variety of regional folk music and traditional genres like as Qawwali and Ghazal Gayaki, as well as contemporary hybrids that combine traditional and western elements. Pakistan boasts a plethora of well-known folk singers. Although there has been some rejection of Pashto music in certain areas, the presence of Afghan refugees in the western regions has sparked interest in it. The media in Pakistan has also played an important role in exposing corruption.
There are four distinct eras in Pakistani architecture: pre-Islamic, Islamic, colonial, and post-colonial. Around the middle of the third millennium BC, the Indus civilisation arose, bringing with it for the first time in the area a sophisticated urban civilization, complete with enormous structures, some of which have survived to this day. Pre-Islamic villages like as Mohenjo Daro, Harappa, and Kot Diji are now tourist destinations. Beginning in the first century AD, the growth of Buddhism and the influence of Greek culture led to the creation of the Greco-Buddhist style. At the pinnacle of the Gandhara style, this period achieved its pinnacle. The remains of the Buddhist monastery Takht-i-Bahi in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa are an example of Buddhist architecture.
When Islam arrived in what is now Pakistan, it brought an abrupt end to Buddhist architecture in the region and a seamless transition to mostly pictureless Islamic architecture. The mausoleum of the Shah Rukn-i-Alam in Multan is the most significant Indo-Islamic-style structure still surviving. Design aspects of Persian-Islamic architecture were frequently merged with Hindustani art throughout the Mughal period, resulting in creative forms of Hindustani art. Many significant structures from the Mughal empire may be found in Lahore, which serves as a temporary home for Mughal emperors. The Badshahi mosque, the Lahore citadel with the renowned Alamgiri Gate, the colorful, Mughal-style Wazir Khan Mosque, the Shalimar Gardens in Lahore, and the Shahjahan Mosque in Thatta are among the most notable. During the British colonial era, a combination of European and Indian-Islamic components resulted in mainly utilitarian Indo-European representative style structures. Modern buildings like as the Faisal Mosque, the Minar-e-Pakistan, and the Mazar-e-Quaid reflect post-colonial national identity. Several architectural infrastructures in Pakistan have been inspired by British architecture, and examples can be seen in Lahore, Peshawar, and Karachi.
Food and drink
Because most of Pakistani food developed in the royal kitchens of sixteenth-century Mughal rulers, it is comparable to cuisine from other parts of South Asia. In comparison to the rest of the subcontinent, Pakistan offers a wider range of meat dishes. The majority of such meals are inspired by British, Central Asian, and Middle Eastern cuisines. Pakistani cuisine makes extensive use of spices, herbs, and seasonings. Most meals include garlic, ginger, turmeric, red chili, and garam masala, and curry is often used in home cuisine. Chapati, a thin flat wheat bread eaten with curry, meat, veggies, and lentils, is a staple meal. Rice is also widely used; it may be eaten plain, cooked with seasonings, or used in sweet recipes.
In the Punjab area, lassi is a traditional drink. Black tea with milk and sugar is widely consumed in Pakistan, with the majority of the people drinking it on a regular basis. Sohan Halwa is a famous sweet dish from Punjab’s southern area that is popular across Pakistan.
The bulk of the sports practiced in Pakistan were introduced and significantly developed by the United Kingdom during the British India period. Pakistan’s national sport is field hockey, which has won three gold medals in the Olympic Games in 1960, 1968, and 1984. Pakistan also has the record for winning the Hockey World Cup four times, in 1971, 1978, 1982, and 1994.
Cricket, on the other hand, is the most popular sport in the nation. The cricket squad (known as Shaheen) won the Cricket World Cup in 1992; it had previously finished second in the event in 1999 and co-hosted it in 1987 and 1996. Pakistan finished second in the first World Twenty20 in South Africa in 2007 and won the World Twenty20 in England in 2009. Until May 2015, when the Zimbabwean squad consented to a visit, no international cricket was played in Pakistan since terrorists assaulted the traveling Sri Lankan cricket team in March 2009.
Abdul Khaliq competed in the 1954 Asian Games and the 1958 Asian Games in athletics. For Pakistan, he won 34 international gold, 15 international silver, and 12 international bronze medals. World-class squash players like Jahangir Khan and Jansher Khan have won the World Open Squash Championship many times during their careers. Jahangir Khan also set a record by winning the British Open 10 times. Pakistan has participated in field hockey, boxing, athletics, swimming, and shooting at the Olympics on many occasions. Pakistan has won ten Olympic medals, eight of which were won in hockey. Medal totals at the Commonwealth Games and Asian Games are 65 and 160, respectively. Polo is popular on a national level, with national tournaments held on a regular basis in various areas of the country. Boxing, billiards, snooker, rowing, kayaking, caving, tennis, contract bridge, golf, and volleyball are also popular, with Pakistani champions at regional and international levels. Basketball is very popular in Pakistan, particularly in Lahore and Karachi.