The society and culture of Pakistan comprises numerous ethnic groups: the Punjabis, Kashmiris, Sindhis in east, Muhajirs, Makrani in the south; Baloch, Hazaras and Pashtun in the west; and the ancient Dardic, Wakhi, Baltistani and Burusho communities in the north. The culture of these Pakistani ethnic groups have been greatly influenced by many of its neighbors, such as the other South Asians, Turkic peoples as well as the peoples of Central Asia and the Middle East.
The origins of the current Pakistani culture can be traced back to the Indus Valley civilization, which was contemporaneous with the ancient Egyptian and Sumerian civilizations, around 5500 years ago. Pakistan was the first region of South Asia to be fully impacted by Islam and has thus developed a distinct Islamic identity, historically different from areas further east.
Performance Arts In Pakistan
There are so many dance and music performance arts in Pakistan—many unique to the ethnic culture of the performer—that they are almost considered common rather than unique. Music and dance are done in the both classical and folk form. Usually the performer wears a costume that features ethnic design. Just as the costume worn by the performer identifies the tribe or ethnic group, so does the music or performance.
There are four main families of musical instruments in Pakistan and more than six hundred Pakistani musical instruments; the most well known are the sitar, veena, rabab, sur mandal and tanpura. Several other musical instruments are used, particularly the dhol, a double-sided drum that is usually hung around the neck and played with sticks, while the dholkit is smaller and played by hand. In addition, the flute is often used.