ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846
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Tribal Citizens and Border Thinking in India

Marginalised as Minority

The behaviour of social groups, when confronted with modernising state power, seems akin to that of marginalised indigenous in postcolonial societies. Such resistance, it is argued, is often backed by an indigenous subjectivity that derives its strength from a knowledge system much different from the one that drives modern nation states. With Sikkim's biodiversity acclaimed as the richest in the country, the state's government has been celebrating the rich traditional knowledge of the three indigenous ethnic communities of Sikkim: the Lepchas, Bhutias and the Limbus. Discourses of Limbu literature and Lepcha traditional knowledge practices pertaining to biodiversity conservation in east Himalayas are analysed here. The paper also dwells on minority groups, whose response to modernising state power is much different from the stated positions of "benevolent recognition" or "pleas for inclusion." In doing so, it explores the possibility of a different modernity in the political position of the Adivasi Indian.

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