ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

Articles by Joseph BaraSubscribe to Joseph Bara

Setting the Record Straight on Birsa Munda and His Political Legacy

Although the role of Birsa Munda has been seminal in championing the Adivasi cause, his political movements and legacy have been distorted, like other prominent Indian historical figures, including B R Ambedkar and M K Gandhi. Despite misrepresentations, Birsa Munda and his politics continue to inspire not just Adivasis but also Dalits and other marginalised sections in their pursuit of attaining social justice.

Adivasis and the Conversion Conundrum

The Adivasis of central India have been vied by various religious missions in history. Christian missions are, however, exceptionally blamed for duping Adivasis and subverting their society. The democratic ethos of propagating one’s faith and the sensibility of the adroit Adivasi psyche must not be undermined in the present age of missionary competition on the brink of communal conflagration.

Journalistic Discourse(s) and the Adivasi

When it comes to the portrayal and depiction of Adivasi communities, the media and journalistic discourse has been reluctant to move away from archaic constructs and ideas. Understanding Adivasi life from their perspective and advocating for “development” on their behalf must be through their terms, cooperating with their traditional systems of existence.

Alien Construct and Tribal Contestation in Colonial Chhotanagpur: The Medium of Christianity

Taking the case of the Mundas and Uraons of Chhotanagpur, this essay looks at the encounter between the colonial state and the tribals of India. It first examines how the term "tribe" evolved to designate a set of negative traits, shaped under colonialism's response to escalating tribal resistance to their rule. It then studies Christianity in its dual role of providing support to colonial rule as well as succour to the "tribals". The paper argues that the colonial state merely transformed pre-colonial prejudices of brahmanical texts and gave them a social Darwinian twist. Unfortunately, the view of tribals as a lower evolutionary form of civilisation continues in nationalist India.

Western Education and Rise of New Identity-Mundas and Oraons of Chotanagpur, 1839-1939

Mundas and Oraons of Chotanagpur, 1839-1939 Joseph Bara Tribal communities in India were neither closed and static entities nor did they passively succumb to changes wrought by external influences. This article traces the evolution of educated munda and onion youth in Chotanagpur under the patronage of British western education and the church missionaries. Yet these very youth were in the forefront in articulating their distinct identity against the internal colonialism perpetuated by the Biharis and against the communal politics engulfing Bengal.

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