Date of Award
Master of Fine Arts (MFA) in Illustration & Visual Culture
In this essay I carry out case studies of Shaadi.com and Tinder to unpack the cultural principles underlying the apps that shape our interpersonal relationships today. I demonstrate that these apps are grounded in a fantasy of frictionless-ness, or the desire to shield the self from discomfort caused by external factors, and argue that this is a fraught cultural ideal. My analysis reveals that a fantasy of frictionless-ness gives birth to a cultural landscape of rampant subjectivity and tepid morality, which hampers our ability to form deep and meaningful connections with each other. Recognising the flaws of such a fantasy, I propose that we ground our personal and political pursuits in a desire for collective and holistic progress instead.
Rajpuria, Purvi, "It's a Match: Shaadi.com, Tinder, and the Fantasy of Frictionless-ness" (2023). MFA in Illustration & Visual Culture. 15.