Arts and Culture
It would not be wide of the mark to say that every aspect of daily life in South Asia is influenced or rather defined by religion. Accordingly, the Muslim society of the Punjab, Pakistan, is also no exception. Islam is the state religion of the country, and the Punjab, although a largest province, yet information technologies are undoubtedly have been instrumental in developing social and religio-cultural behaviors of other small provinces. There are certain human behaviors which have been constituted by emergent new styles of clothing which are popularly deemed Islamic ways of dressing. These clothing styles have been adopted by certain factions mainly the Sunni (Barelvis) and the Wahabis within Islam. At the level of visual, these styles have prompted to create a vivid divide between the most popular styles of European pant-shirt and/or the local Shalwar-Qameez or Kurta-Shalwar and the Islamic styles of clothing. In fact, this visual segregation has engendered the development of critical understanding of binaries of European and local clothing styles as secular, modern and profane and the Islamic dressing as religious, traditional and sacred. These behaviors reflect the strong feelings of sectarian differences, certain spiritual ties, identities, rivalries, desires and social status etc. This study endeavors to scrutinize the relationship between these so-called Islamic styles of dressing and the Sharia (Islamic doctrine) and describes the reasons for ongoing process of Arabicization of the local cultures, and altering popular taste and aesthetics.