Binders full of women: A mother's plan for arranging a marriage


In the Canadian play A Brimful of Asha real-life mother and son Asha and Ravi Jain share the stage and tell their true story of a generational and cultural clash.

Ravi's parents - who are originally from India - tried in vain to arrange his marriage, putting adverts in Indian newspapers and filling binders with the details of 150 potential brides.

Instead Ravi met and married a woman without their help.

The pressure his parents put him under has not ruined their relationship. And when he told his mother he was writing a play and book about his experience she agreed to perform alongside him, convinced the audience would agree with her.

"Arranged marriage worked for us," explains Mrs Jain. "Why wouldn't it work for our children?"

The BBC spent the day in Ravi's family house in Toronto, listening to their playful teasing and bickering at the kitchen table.

Produced by Anna Bressanin; camera by Ilya Shnitser

Picture This

Copyright © 2015 BBC. The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.