Category Archives: Adivasi / Adibasi

“Adivasi [Adibasi] – which is derived from Sanskrit – is applied to the dark-skinned or Austro-Asiatic indigenous groups of India (usually those from Eastern India). It is a commonly-used term in Jharkhand, Bihar, West Bengal and Odisha. It is also used by the local Mongoloid tribes of North Eastern India for the migrant workers who were brought in as indentured labourers to work in tea plantations during the colonial period. ‘Tribal’ is a very broad term in the English language, as we all know, and includes all the different indigenous groups of India.” – Santal scholar Ivy Hansdak (email dated 27 March 2020)
https://indiantribalheritage.org/?p=23032

“Since the Indian Constitution uses the term ‘Scheduled Tribes’ or ‘tribals’ to refer to indigenous communities in India and the colloquial reference used by several indigenous communities themselves is ‘adivasis’ these two terms shall be used interchangeably.” – Rebecca S . David in “An analysis of the impact of the Forest Rights Act (2006) in three states of India” (MPhil University of Cambridge, UK, 2014), p. 1
https://www.academia.edu/30648733/
https://indiantribalheritage.org/?p=15257

“Adivasis do not form a homogenous community. Achievements related to socio-economic well-being were found to vary across groups and places among the members of the same community. […] Instead of seeing the Adivasis as ‘problems,’ the entire country can benefit massively by perceiving the Adivasis as co-citizens and sharing their historically constructed cultural values which often manifest the best forms of democracy and uphold the notions of higher levels of justice, fairness and equality than those which prevail in the seemingly mainstream societies. By ensuring their rights to live their own lives, the country can in fact guarantee itself a flourishing democracy.” – Brochure for the report titled “Living World of the Adivasis of West Bengal: An Ethnographic Exploration”, issued on the occasion of the Kolkata International Book Fair 2020
https://indiantribalheritage.org/?p=31882

“Adivasi people have an alternative world view, which has rarely been acknowledged or recognized. Their existence was never based on accumulation or consumerism. […] All of us can learn from them.”– Mari Marcel Thekaekara (“Adivasi people: proud not primitive”, New Internationalist 15 July 2013)
https://newint.org/blog/2013/07/15/india-adivasi-survival-international/?55521117611331971
https://indiantribalheritage.org/?p=11937

“Adivasis is the collective name used for the many indigenous peoples of India. The term Adivasi derives from the Hindi word ‘adi’ which means of earliest times or from the beginning and ‘vasi’ meaning inhabitant or resident, and it was coined in the 1930s, largely a consequence of a political movement to forge a sense of identity among the various indigenous peoples of India.” – Minority Rights Group International (World Directory of Minorities and Indigenous Peoples – India: Adivasis 2008)
https://www.unhcr.org/refworld/docid/49749d14c.html 
https://indiantribalheritage.org/?p=8415

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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“Woodsmoke and Leafcups”: A book that opens up the full joy of tribal life without romanticisation – Bastar

Woodsmoke and Leafcups; Madhu Ramnath, Harper Litmus, Rs.399. Felix Padel, The Hindu, March 12, 2016 | To read the full article, click here >> The full joy of tribal life opens up in these pages. As do the painful struggles under the exploitative … Continue reading

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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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Music album and video by Santal village children and youths (DVD, CD): “Children see world around them differently” – West Bengal & Odisha

The photos were taken by the students themselves. Now, we have produced two music albums (one video and another audio). All the photos and video clippings that are used in the album are also taken by the students and teachers … Continue reading

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