Category Archives: History

“In Anthropological Perspectives on Indian Tribes […] the anthropologist Subhadra Mitra Channa writes that people categorised as tribes are not merely remnants of a static past.” – Richard Kamei in “Uncivilising the Mind: How anthropology shaped the discourse on tribes in India” (Caravan Magazine, 1 March 2021)
https://caravanmagazine.in/books/anthropologists-tribes-india
https://indiantribalheritage.org/?p=12454

“Since the days of remote past, the diversified art and cultural forms generated by the tribal and rural people of India, have continued to evince their creative magnificence. Apart from their outstanding brilliance from the perspective of aesthetics, the tribal/folk art and culture forms have played an instrumental role in reinforcing national integrity, crystallizing social solidarity, fortifying communal harmony, intensifying value-system and promoting the elements of humanism among the people of the country.” – Final Report “Evaluation Study of Tribal/Folk Arts and Culture in West Bengal, Orissa, Jharkhand, Chhatisgrah and Bihar” submitted to SER Division Planning Commission Govt. of India New Delhi by Gramin Vikas Seva Sanshtha West Bengal
https://indiantribalheritage.org/?p=29938

“Imagine a 25-year-old who took on an empire, left an indelible mark on tribal rights across the country and was seen as a mystic and folk hero for hundreds of thousands. Few would have achieved so much in so short a time and it’s not surprising then that Birsa Munda’s portrait hangs proudly in India’s parliament.” – Aditi Shah in “Birsa Munda – The Tribal Hero” (livehistoryindia.com, 26 July 2018)
https://www.livehistoryindia.com/history-daily/2018/07/26/birsa-munda
https://indiantribalheritage.org/?p=23975

“[I]t was by reading and speaking to Tagore that these founders of modern India, Gandhi and Nehru, developed a theory of nationalism that was inclusive rather than exclusive. Tagore’s [collected lectures on the subject of] Nationalism should be mandatory reading in today’s climate of xenophobia, sectarianism, violence and intolerance.” – Ramachandra Guha, Introduction to the 2017 Penguin ed. of Nationalism by Rabindranath Tagore
https://www.worldcat.org/title/nationalism/oclc/1099200491
https://indiantribalheritage.org/?p=18808

“Every society had narratives about its past and some regarded them as history as time went on […] So your fantasy runs wild, you can concoct a utopia exactly as you want.” – Romila Thapar (Emeritus Professor of History, Jawaharlal Nehru University) in response to a participant’s question: “Is there also the risk of creating fake history through the invention of tradition?” [1h41m55s]
https://youtu.be/QZU0G0P3Elw?t=1h41m55s
https://indiantribalheritage.org/?page_id=22452

“A long, contentious debate on whether Vedic culture originated in what is now Indian territory or was the result of complex patterns of migration and settlements has, so far, thrown up little evidence of the former.” – Sowmiya Ashok in “The Dig” (Fiftytwo.in, 2 April 2021)
https://fiftytwo.in/story/the-dig/
https://indiantribalheritage.org/?p=5454

“[R]ight now we are in the midst of a name-changing game, as if by changing a name, history can be erased. Battles lost have become battles won, words on plaques have been changed, the victor becoming the loser, the loser the victor.” – Novelist
Shashi Deshpande in “Why have we lost the spirit of questioning handed down by the Vedas, the Upanishads, the epics?” (Scroll.in, 25 July 2021)
https://scroll.in/article/1001004/why-have-we-lost-the-spirit-of-questioning-handed-down-by-the-vedas-the-upanishads-the-epics
https://indiantribalheritage.org/?p=4720

“The Aryans describe their enemies as dark in complexion, noseless or flat-nosed, of harsh speech, not honouring the Aryan gods, not observing the Aryan religious ritual, but rich in material possessions and living in fortified cities. They are named Dāsas, Asuras, Panis and Kīkatas. The Aryan invaders finally triumphed over the non-Aryans, many of whom were killed, enslaved or driven further inland. In this land, which the Aryans conquered from their enemies, were founded the early Aryan settlements.” – B.G. Gokhale in Ancient India (Bombay, 1959 ed.), p. 22
http://www.worldcat.org/oclc/602186629
https://indiantribalheritage.org/?p=5851

“The injustice done to the tribal people of India is a shameful chapter in our country’s history. The tribals were called ‘rakshas’ (demons), ‘asuras’, and what not. They were slaughtered in large numbers, and the survivors and their descendants were degraded, humiliated, and all kinds of atrocities inflicted on them for centuries. They were deprived of their lands, and pushed into forests and hills where they eke out a miserable existence of poverty, illiteracy, disease, etc. And now efforts are being made by some people to deprive them even of their forest and hill land where they are living, and the forest produce on which they survive.” – Supreme Court judgment quoted in “India, largely a country of immigrants” (The Hindu, 12 January 2011)
https://www.thehindu.com/opinion/op-ed/article1081343.ece
https://indiantribalheritage.org/?p=4315

“How could peace be brought, with justice? Is there even a movement for peace? How does this war compare with other wars in India, and worldwide? Few have targeted civilian villagers as remorselessly, though Ashoka’s Kalinga war, over 2,000 years ago, that killed 100000 people directly, and many indirectly according to Ashoka’s own inscriptions, presents a model of genocidal invasion and takeover all too comparable to the present situation. This paper walks through this context of Bastar.” – Abstract by Felix Padel (Journal of People’s Studies, 2017)
https://www.academia.edu/34104980
https://indiantribalheritage.org/?p=21733

The unique narrative of shawls worn among 16 major tribes: Reflecting one’s social standing and the younger generation’s changing tastes – Nagaland

ANTHONY KURIAKOSE narrates how each Naga shawl is a thing of beauty, mystery, history and eternal appeal. And how each shawl wraps in its folds, a unique narrative. In the textile history of  India, the warrior shawls of  Nagaland have … Continue reading

Posted in Crafts and visual arts, Customs, Dress and ornaments, Fashion and design, Figures, census and other statistics, Government of India, History, Modernity, Names and communities, Organizations, Photos and slideshows, Press snippets, Revival of traditions, Seasons and festivals, Seven Sister States & Sikkim – North Eastern Council, Storytelling, Tribal elders, Women, Worship and rituals | Tagged , , , , , , | Comments Off on The unique narrative of shawls worn among 16 major tribes: Reflecting one’s social standing and the younger generation’s changing tastes – Nagaland

The term ‘Adivasi’: Neither an equivalent to ‘Tribe’ nor used in the Indian Constitution – Mainstream Weekly

By J.J. Roy Burman, Mainstream, Vol XLVII, No 32, July 25, 2009 In India the term ‘Adivasi’ has gained immense popularity in the last few decades to identify the tribes. This term is more commonly brought to use by the NGO … Continue reading

Posted in Adivasi / Adibasi, Anthropology, Colonial policies, Constitution and Supreme Court, Figures, census and other statistics, Gandhian social movement, Government of India, History, Literature and bibliographies, Media portrayal, Misconceptions, Modernity, Quotes, Rights of Indigenous Peoples, Scheduled Tribe (ST), Seven Sister States & Sikkim – North Eastern Council | Comments Off on The term ‘Adivasi’: Neither an equivalent to ‘Tribe’ nor used in the Indian Constitution – Mainstream Weekly

Tribal Memory, Folklore and Hindu Epic Narratives: Papers presented for “Tribes In Transition-II: Reaffirming Indigenous Identity Through Narrative” (National Conference) – New Delhi

PLENARY SESSION Chaired by: Prof. M. Asaduddin, Dean, Faculty of Humanities & Languages, Jamia Millia Islamia, New DelhiPaper Presenters: Dr. Athikho Kaisii (JMI, Delhi), Dr. Pravin Kumar (IGNTU, Amarkantak), Dr Ananya Barua (Hindu College, Delhi). Dr. Saroj Kumar Mahananda (JMI, Delhi) and Norkey Wangmu … Continue reading

Posted in Adivasi / Adibasi, Anthropology, Assimilation, Cultural heritage, Customs, Education and literacy, Ekalavya (Eklavya, Eklabya), EMR & Factory schools, Games and leisure time, History, Languages and linguistic heritage, Literature - fiction, Literature and bibliographies, Music and dance, Names and communities, Quotes, Revival of traditions, Seasons and festivals, Seven Sister States & Sikkim – North Eastern Council, Storytelling, Tribal identity, Worship and rituals | Tagged , , , , , | Comments Off on Tribal Memory, Folklore and Hindu Epic Narratives: Papers presented for “Tribes In Transition-II: Reaffirming Indigenous Identity Through Narrative” (National Conference) – New Delhi

A master of traditional Kurumba painting techniques: Krishnan of Velaricombai village (Nilgiris) – Tamil Nadu

Making do without blue in the Blue Mountains Olivia Waring,  April 4, 2017 | To view these and more photos in larger size and read the full article, click here >> Krishnan of Velaricombai village in the Nilgiris attempts to breathe life into … Continue reading

Posted in Audio resources - external, Bees and honey, Community facilities, Constitution and Supreme Court, Crafts and visual arts, Cultural heritage, Customs, Dress and ornaments, Ecology and environment, Economy and development, Education and literacy, Figures, census and other statistics, Government of India, History, Media portrayal, Modernity, Names and communities, Nature and wildlife, Nilgiri, Organizations, Photos and slideshows, Quotes, Regions of India, Resources, Revival of traditions, Rural poverty, Seasons and festivals, Southern region – Southern Zonal Council, Storytelling, Success story, Tips, Tribal identity, Video resources - external, Western Ghats - tribal heritage & ecology, Women, Worship and rituals | Tagged , , | Comments Off on A master of traditional Kurumba painting techniques: Krishnan of Velaricombai village (Nilgiris) – Tamil Nadu

Rock shelters of Bhimbetka: Aboriginal folklore and popular culture of the Adivasis – Madhya Pradesh

[…] Fresh from the book launch of Ijlal Majeed’s stunning new poetry collection in Bhopal, I find myself gazing at the rock shelters of Bhimbetka and murmuring these verses over and over again. For indeed there is something subliminal about … Continue reading

Posted in Adivasi / Adibasi, Archaeology, Central region – Central Zonal Council, Crafts and visual arts, Cultural heritage, Customs, History, Music and dance, Nature and wildlife, Photos and slideshows, Press snippets, Storytelling, Worship and rituals | Comments Off on Rock shelters of Bhimbetka: Aboriginal folklore and popular culture of the Adivasis – Madhya Pradesh