Analysis Of The Primal Land By Pratibha Ray

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Chapter Two
Ethnographic Fictional representation of tribe and gender in select fiction of Pratibha Ray Pratibha Ray’s The Primal Land is the story of Bonda tribals who struggled to survive through the development induced displacement of their indigenous ‘country’. She reconstructs the socio-cultural myths, beliefs and rituals of the past and also the present transformations in the socio-cultural setup in the Bonda lands. BondaRay’s narrative provides us the social, political, and economic instabilities, which are the reasons behind the rise of displacement and exploitation after independence. This novel is a good example of an ethnographic novel because it offers us a delineative ethnography. Ethnographically it reflects the true people
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In the Bonda tribe women play a focal role, she is the one who takes care of all the household and earning activities. In the social set up of marriage the Bondunis have their choice to select their groom and set up their diya. Since the women in Bonda Tribe are elder than the groom they are the working partners, groom have to pay bride price to Bondunis fathers in order to marry. Before marriage all the Bonda women are free to choose their partners in the dormitories they live in, but after marriage they have to take care of her husband’s home forever. The birth of Bonda girl is equally celebrated by the Bonda tribals as the birth of a son. Since Bonda women help in working on the fields, she till the age of marriage is equally independent individual. She gets share of every work she does on field and in such a way contributes to her father’s family. She has sexual liberty to choose her partner and have multiple relationships before marriage premarital affairs and pregnancy in among Bonda tribals is not uncommon and is more liberalized. Bondunis life before marriage is more independent than after marriage, the choices she makes after marriage are directed to the upbringing of her husband’s family. The irony with post marriage situation of Bonda women is that with older age she loses her strength and the husband if chooses to leave her on grounds of lacking physical strength to work, she cannot resist it. Certain customs of Bonda tribals restrict Bonda women to make choices after marriage. The short story Sanki depicts the dilemma of the Bondauni who keeps waiting for her husband and reaches her age. The short story is about Sanki and Buda, they both got married and set up their separate diya. Ray explains the whole custom of suitors and choice of Bondauni for marriage. She gives details of the Sibang tradition of Bonda

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