hair's colour in Sanskrit

claude setzer cssetzer at
Wed May 7 18:23:32 UTC 1997

I have found quite the opposite of this opinion. In fact, it seemed
extremely ironic to me, as an American with light skin, that many Indians
were so obsessed with the minute differences of skin coloring. I have, on
several occasions, found a person that I considered to be very dark in skin
color make very snide remarks about another Indian based on the fact that
the other Indian had "dark" or "black" skin. I had to actually see the two
people standing together and look quite carefully to determine a difference
in skin color, but the one that was very slightly lighter clearly
considered himself "fair" and the other quite an inferior person due to the
fact that his skin color was "dark." I have also observed Indians referring
to clothing  as "black" (and therefore unsuitable) because it was a color
that an American would call light beige or off white.

> From: Aditya, the Hindu Skeptic <aditya at>
> To: Members of the list <indology at>
> Subject: Re: hair's colour in sanskrit
> Date: Wednesday, May 07, 1997 12:40 PM
> It seems the obsession with skin and hair shades is only Western and
> Dominique's outburst about  the lack of response does not make sense to
> me. Similarly while Western culture including  the  bible is so obsessed
> with homosexuality there is no such attention paid in Indian literature
> and there are no words corresponding to gay or lesbians as well. The
> recent movie "Kama Sutra" is an exception and imported concept and it
> shows in the resentment that Indians have for the movie.
> Indian have basically two skin colors, fair(feminine)  and dark
> (masculine) and do not have words for any minor variations, just like
> you have to go to an eskimo to find 20 words for snow. 
> Have a peaceful and prosperous day.
> Aditya Mishra 
> Phone: 954-746-0442 
> e-mail: a018967t at
> homepage:
> Thought of the day:
> 	A hug warms the soul and places a smile in the heart.

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