Saturday, April 27, 2013

Dr. Alles Lecture on the Ādivāsīs in India

Dr. Alles Lecture on the Ādivāsīs in India was very different from what I was expecting in a variety of ways. Firstly, his actual presentation and lecture was less formal and not in a negative way. Dr. Alles presented the information in a way that allowed the class to interpret it for themselves. I think Alles chose to present the information in this way because the Ādivāsīs story tradition is almost an untouched by Western scholars and our insight could be beneficial. Due to the lack of knowledge on the topic available, I was opened to a whole new world of traditional stories. The stories presented and videos shown of those stories, reminded me very little of any of the story traditions the class learned this year aside from possibly the Native American Tradition. However, when I heard the stories of the Ādivāsīs, I was reminded of another learning point in the class. Max Luthi's theory of the origin of fairytales- tales were created by local events- fits pretty well with the stories told by Dr. Alles. For instance, many of the stories were related to a particular location or life event. The story of the tiger and the cow could have conceivably resulted from a tiger killing a farmer's cow one day. Other examples to prove the Ādivāsīs connection to Luithi's theory are the multiple stories relating to the mountains in the surrounding areas. Stories of mountains probably originated to explain trade routes. 

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