Vivekananda &c.

Tue Mar 24 17:24:48 UTC 1998

Interesting to read Vidyasankar and Palaniappan writings.

Not only the Thevar hereditary chief, Sethupathis.
Nadars (Shanar is a "bad" term nowadays, equivalent to Negro)
are subject to sanskritization now. Rich trader Nadars vie with
each other and others to sponsor homams, RSS, etc.
They spend lot of money on temples to become trustees.
eg., Madurai Meenakshi temple has many rich Nadar trustees,
traditionally held by Nattukottai Chettiars. There is big
demand for fair skinned brides among TuuttukkuDi Nadars.
(once told to me by a white Indology professor)

Nadars represent one rare case illustrating mobility in
hindu caste hierarchy. By becoming businessmen, getting educated.
The position of Maravars has slipped considerably.
They still are rural, illiterate, tied to land to a large extent.

N. Ganesan

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