Category Archives: Misconceptions

“We are so much more than that. We follow a tradition rich in music, dance and love.” – Swarnalatha, who now runs an NGO that works for the upliftment for people of her tribal Irula community (known for their snake-catching skills), quoted in “Irulas much more than a community of snake catchers” timesofindia.indiatimes.com, 23 February 2018
https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/chennai/irulas-much-more-than-a-community-of-snake-catchers/articleshow/63035204.cms
https://indiantribalheritage.org/?p=1753

“It is wrong and does not help the tribal cause either to reduce the image of the Indian tribal society to that of destitute remnants, on the verge of dying out.” – Georg Pfeffer in Voices from the Periphery: Subalternity and Empowerment in India ( Routledge India 2012)
https://indiantribalheritage.org/?p=11961

“There are myths indicating that Asuras were made slaves by Aryans. These slave races are still struggling for annihilation of caste system. They live in abject poverty. Their latest names are ‘Scheduled Castes’, ‘Scheduled Tribes, and ‘Other Backward Castes’. They are yet to know about ‘human rights’. The fact is that aboriginals were enslaved and subjected to inhuman treatment through centuries. […] Students of history and anthropology have found numerous instances recorded in all prehistoric and established history of India, of a glowing past of this ancient tribe [known as Kolis, Koris and Kols] and more is being uncovered as research continues.” – “Koli, Kori, Kol – Aboriginal tribes of India” by Bhushan on MEGHnet (1 January 2011), based on three publications written in Gujarati
https://www.meghnet.in/2011/01/kolikori-of-india-we-call-them.html
https://indiantribalheritage.org/?p=2918

“The nation-state’s changing definition of the ‘tribal’ is informed by certain stereotypes or prejudices, by preserving the tribal identity, in an implicit manner, as being ‘barbaric’ and ‘uncivilised’. The tribal worldview has never been taken cognizance of, while working out the definition of ‘tribe’ and, instead, there is imposition of certain state-sanctioned identity whereby the tribal’s identity-crisis is magnified.” – Shreya Jessica Dhan in “Defining the ‘Tribe’ in State Discourse: From Adivasi and Scheduled Tribe to Indigenous Peoples” (conference paper summary)
Report for the ICSSR-sponsored Two-Day National Conference Tribes In Transition-II: Reaffirming Indigenous Identity Through Narrative organised by The Department of English & Outreach Programme Jamia Millia Islamia (New Delhi, 27-28 February 2017)
https://indiantribalheritage.org/?p=23073

“If Adivasis were to start writing their own Discovery Of India, it would be something like this: There are those who talk of India’s ‘5000 year-old culture,’ there are those who talk of its ‘timeless traditions.’ If India has a timeless tradition, it is ours.” – Gail Omvedt in “Call us adivasis, please” (ADIVASI Special issue, The Hindu, July 16, 2000)
https://indiantribalheritage.org/?p=26645

“Aparna Vaidik’s [book] My Son’s Inheritance goes deeper into Indian history and culture, and shows that instead of being a recent phenomenon, violence, physical and psychic, has been endemic to the Indian socio-polity since ages. […] Vaidik locates this violence in communal enmities between the Hindus and the minorities, particularly Muslims, which often validates itself as retributive justice. Deep psychic violence also operated, the author reminds us, among Hindus themselves. Many Indian Muslims and Christians, we are asked to remember, were Hindus of the lower castes, or ‘non-Aryan’ tribals, who converted out of Hinduism because of the torture of untouchability and ostracisation.” – Book review by Suparna Banerjee (The Hindu, 1 August 2020)
https://www.thehindu.com/books/books-reviews/my-sons-inheritance-review-a-culture-of-violence/article32237271.ece
https://indiantribalheritage.org/?page_id=7592

Constructive action is our only future – Prof. Ganesh Devy on the “adivasiness of the tribals” in Gujarat

WHEN Gujarat was burning between 27 February and 4 March [2002], the tribal belt on the eastern border of Gujarat was quiet. The only exception was the two districts of Panchmahals for which Godhra is the main town. Elsewhere in … Continue reading

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“In Bastar, I learned that my books were used to teach English to the tribal children”: Chetan Bhagat on his sense of belonging and literature as entertainment

[…] I know most writers want to be published in the US and UK after becoming famous in India, but for me, it’s very important that even the smallest part of my own country experiences my writings and feels like a … Continue reading

Posted in Bastar, Childhood and children, Commentary, Education and literacy, Globalization, Languages and linguistic heritage, Misconceptions, Modernity, Press snippets, Storytelling | Comments Off on “In Bastar, I learned that my books were used to teach English to the tribal children”: Chetan Bhagat on his sense of belonging and literature as entertainment

Video, audio, photo content & stories | “Cover Your Country” by PARI: Rural people speak about their lives

Nayak, 75 years old, is from the Lambadi community, and his animals – like those of many cattle breeders here – are Thurupu cattle. The Lambadi (a Scheduled Tribe), the Yadava (Golla) (an OBC) and Chenchu (a Particularly Vulnerable Tribal Group) … Continue reading

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India’s tribal, folk and devotional music: Secular and ceremonial songs – An overview

“Tribal, Folk and Devotional Music” by NA Jairazbhoy in AL Basham (ed.). A Cultural History of India. London: Oxford University Press, 1975, pp. 234-237. Excerpt from Chapter XVI Music (pp. 212-242) TRIBAL, FOLK, AND DEVOTIONAL MUSIC Classical music is the most refined … Continue reading

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Learning from tribal communities’ success stories: “Is it eccentric to live in beautiful scenery in the hills among some of the most charming people in the country?”

Arunachal Pradesh’s Singchung Bagun Village Community Reserve is winning hearts of the netizens for its novel cause. The reserve built to preserve a rare species of bird was set up after researchers, the Bagun tribe from the state, and the … Continue reading

Posted in Anthropology, Eco tourism, Ecology and environment, Education and literacy, Gandhian social movement, Health and nutrition, Literature and bibliographies, Misconceptions, Names and communities, Nature and wildlife, Networking, Organizations, Quotes, Resources, Rights of Indigenous Peoples, Rural poverty, Success story, Tips | Tagged | Comments Off on Learning from tribal communities’ success stories: “Is it eccentric to live in beautiful scenery in the hills among some of the most charming people in the country?”