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Dennis Templeman's work on Northern Nadars

Dennis Templeman's work on Northern Nadars

Table of Contents

1. Introduction

2. The Nadars and their Social Setting, Past and Present

3. Kinship and Marriage among the Northern Nadars

4. Nadar Religious Beliefs and Practices

5. Nadar Local Associations

6. Conflict in Northern Nadar Local

Associations (1): The Case of Aruppukottai

7. Conflict in Northern Nadar Local Associations (2): Palayampatti and Pattiveeranpatti

8. The Changing Role of Nadar Local Associations

9. Twenty Years of Change: 1970-90

10. Conclusions: The Northern Nadars Agency and Ideology

Book Description

. This work analyzes the upward mobility of the Northern Nadars of Tamil Nadu within the caste hierarchy. The author studies two types of changes--caste mobility and social evolution--thereby challenging the notion of the caste system being a rigid order.

Great insight to the Nadar Community to the Young generation, January 13, 2002

Reviewer: Mayilvahanan Nadar from India

it is a great book to read about the community which came up to the higher economy status by their sheer hard work, Dedication and their self formed Organisation support.

Conflict,Competition and power Equation Among the Nadars, June 24, 2000

Reviewer: Muthuraman.P from Tamilnadu,India

Dennis Templeman's work on Northern Nadars had emerged out of Robert Hardgrave's study, The Nadars Of Tamilnadu:The political culture of a community in change (1969),often considered as the first classic on Tamil Nadars. Exactly after 30 years of his mentor's work Templeman came out with his masterpiece about how the disjunctive social process of conflict, competition and power equation among the caste members and between castes were instrumental in weakening the effectiveness of Nadars caste association at the grassroot level, popularly known "uravinmurais". The mark of difference between Hardgrave and Templeman studies are that the former primarily dealt with how the Nadar caste as a whole rose to a 'solid' and 'forward caste' status achieving 'power' and wealth from a lowly position in the social hierarchy. Whereas, the later work focuses on the uncovered dimension of Hardgrave's work i.e., conflict within local association, between local associations and between Nadars and other communities in local settlement, which focuses upon the manipulation and use power and the struggle for power at the grassroot level rather than at the regional and national level. Primarily Templeman's work examined these local associations under which caste as a whole achieved great cohesiveness and effectiveness, as well as the conditions which ultimately have led to their present weakened state.

This work is based on intensive field study over a period of twenty five years in five distinct Nadar settlements i.e., Madurai (a large town), Aruppukottai (a small town), Palayampatti and Pattiveeranpatti ( two villages) and Palamedu (a small village).

. Templeman diagnosed three cardinal principles that gained currency among the Northern Hindu Nadars viz., 1) Caste as an endogamous group 2) importance of relative caste status and 3) Usefulness of local association.

Bsram B


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