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A Traffic in Marriage

A Traffic in Marriage

(p.107) 5 A Traffic in Marriage
We Were Adivasis
Megan Moodie
University of Chicago Press

Chapter Five describes the emergence of annual collective weddings, known as samuhikvivaha, as the centerpiece of Dhanka articulations of tribal identity. Such weddings allow the values of the era of government service to determine the marriage and family arrangements of a younger generation. It further shows that contemporary tribal identity politics must necessarily be worked out in the terrain of marriage because it is here that the difference between caste and tribe has often been drawn. However, the effects of this work are heavily gendered. There is a traffic in marriage in which collective weddings are undertaken for the stated purpose of protecting poor girls and their families from dowry demands, yet reinscribe marriage as the ultimate horizon for young Dhanka women.

Keywords:   marriage, collective weddings, identity, gender, women, Dhanka

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