The Oxford India Elwin

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From presenting, in Elwin's own words, the account of his going to work among the tribal peoples of central India, to affording glimpses of his seminal work on the unique institution of the ghotul among the Murias of Bastar, or relating Elwin's attempts at understanding the high incidence of murder and suicide among the Bison-horn Marias of Bastar, The Oxford India Elwin looks beyond the general and the oft-repeated to include within its covers the many fascinating discoveries that Verrier Elwin made while working among the different tribal communities in India. While the Introduction to Folk Songs of the Maikal Hills discusses the principles of translating folk poetry, the importance of the elements of nature, magic, the supernatural, and song and dance in tribal life is highlighted through selections from The Myths of Middle India. Whether providing glimpses of Elwin's travels in the remote Northeast, or discussing the effects of 'civilization' on tribal art, or describing the Naga people and their customs, or presenting the myths of the NEFA region, the effort is to bring the man, his thoughts and actions, the contributions he made towards upholding and preserving the cultural diversity of the Subcontinent, closer to readers through a single volume which will be both accessible and affordable. The book will be a valuable addition to the Oxford India Collection which includes the writings of Ghalib, Premchand, Ramanujan, Nehru, and Gandhi. Armed with a useful and perceptive Introduction by G.N. Devy, this edition will appeal to all those who know and adore Elwin, as also students and researchers of anthropology, cultural studies, and Indian history.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780195697919
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
  • Publication date: 6/15/2009
  • Pages: 440
  • Product dimensions: 5.80 (w) x 8.70 (h) x 1.20 (d)

Meet the Author

Verrier Elwin (1902-64) was an educator and missionary in India who is well known for his work with the tribes of India. He also served as the chief of the Anthropological Survey of India.

G.N. Devy is Professor at the Dhirubhai Ambani Institute of Information and Commmunication Technology.

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Table of Contents

Publisher's Note
1. Forward: Leaves from the Jungle
2. 'Dear as the Moon': The Tribal World of Verrier Elwin
3. 'Philanthropology': Philanthropologist: Marias; Murias; Kuttia Konds; True Treasure; Bondos; Saoras
4. 'Organization of the Tribe': The Murias and Their Ghotul: The Clan System; Clan Rules; The Family; Summary: An Evening in the Ghotul; Songs; Ghotul Discipline
5. Preface: Philanthropologist
6. 'Priests and Shamans': The Religion of an Indian Tribe: Priests and Shamans; The Buyya; The Kuranmaran; Reminischence; The Idaimaran; The Art of the Ikon; Ikons Designed to Promote or Preserve the Fertility of the Crops; Ikons Dedicated to Gods to Avert Disease; Ikons Made to Assist Childbirth; Ikons which Represent Shrines and Hills; Ikons Made in Honour of Tutelaries
7. 'Folksongs of the Maikal Hills': Philanthropologist: Introduction
8. 'Introduction: The Creation of the World and Mankind': Myths from Middle India: Agaria; Muria; Bharia; Baiga; Rajnengi; Pardhan; Gond; Ahir; Kol; Dhulia; Dhanwar; Pardhan; Ojha; Panka; Bhui Maria; Lohar; Kahar; Kond; Lanjhia Saora; Gadaba; Jhoria; Kamar; Gogia Pardhan; Chokh Agaria; Asur; Bondo; Muria; Some Aspects Religion: Ahir; Witchcraft and Magic: Dewar, Pardhan-Festivals, Song, and Dance: Badi, Gond
9. 'Travels in the NEFA Highlands': Philanthropologist: A Pilgrimage to Tawang; A Scramble among the Tagins; Promenades in Siang; The Strange Fascination of Lohit; Visits to Tirap
10. 'The Art of the North-East Frontier': Philanthropologist: Introduction: A Frontier of Hope
11. 'Nagaland': Philanthropologist: A Fine People; The Kiratas; The Naga Countryside; The Word 'Naga'; The Naga Groups; Naga Life and Culture; The Naga Villages and Homes; Religion; Feasts of Merit; Head-Hunting; The Naga Languages; Naga Poetry; The Bird Replies: A Time of Change
12. 'Myths of the North-East Frontier': Philanthropologist: Introduction
13. 'Democracy in NEFA': Philanthropologist: The Tribal Councils in NEFA
14. Folk Songs of Chhattisharh: Selected Songs Notes

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