Gods, Heroes and their Story Tellers Intangible Cultural Heritage of South India

by V. Hari Saravanan


Type : Paperback

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Summary of the Book

We can hear Urumula Naganna’s drum roll during the rendition of the Sri Akammagaru Kaviya. An oral tradition which is as old as the hills is captured in the book Gods, Heroes and their Storytellers. Do you know the story of how the Madiga community came to inherit the right to skin cattle carcass and produce leather articles? How are contemporary Folk Oral Literatures connected to the Ramayana and the Mahabharata? There are many such stories and tradition bearers who doggedly go on in spite of the onslaught of the digital media. The author here has tried his best in keeping these traditions alive by not only telling the stories but also by living with the story tellers themselves. The rich details give us a window to a world which is not only very far away for our everyday mundane existence but also makes us retrospect on what we are missing out. Each of the tradition bearers are different and so are their stories and the region to which they belong. These are not merely stories but a way of life for these oral narrators who are fast disappearing in today’s consumerist landscape. The need of the hour is to keep alive these traditions and the tradition bearers.

About the Author

V. Hari Saravanan was born in the city of Mumbai, later moved to Chennai spending most of his life in these two metros without forsaking his connection with his native Kongu cultural geography in Tamil Nadu. His innate love for traditions at home and among his immediate society made him question and find out answers for ritual practices happening around him. This led him to research on a variety of topics ranging from Silambam martial art of Tamil Nadu, Indian Folklore and Ecology, Oral history, Archaeology and iconography, Religion and belief systems. His research and documentation in Indian Folklore led him to co-author the book Anubavankalin Nizhal Padai — in Tamil about the oral histories among Dalit, Pastoral and Adivasi communities across India. His Ethnographic studies led him to travel across states in India to document Folk Oral Literatures, Folk Paintings and for Cultural tourism projects with the direct participation of local population. His passion is towards conservation and proper presentation of community and individual oral knowledge systems.

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