Majuli Cultural Landscape Management Authority
...Promoting and preserving the rich heritage of Majuli

CULTURE - IN THE RIVER ISLAND OF MAJULI

Majuli as a Vasnavite site has its special distinction which made it unique in the eyes of the world. During 16th century A.D., concomitant with the renaissance period, that changed the face of the world, a similar resurgence in socio-cultural dimension by the great Vaisnava Saint Sankardeva had brought in the ideas of democratic social values, unification of diverse ethnic groups with verdant spiritualism which founded the basic fabric of a casteless social structure, the Assamese Society. It created a system of social governance and community living which continued over centuries, is a unique example of unity in diversity. In addition to that, Majuli is also enriched by the vibrant multicoloured culture of its ethnic inhabitants belonging to the Mishings, the Deoris, the Sonowal Kacharis, the Ahoms and the Nepali Communities.

Culture in the river island of Majuli can be viewed and understood in the following categories:

DRAMA

The form of bhaona was introduced by Shrimanta Sankardeva to convey religious and cultural messages to the people through entertainment.

MASK MAKING

Mask making is one of the most famous traditional crafts still practiced in Majuli. Natun Chamaguri Sattra has worldwide acclaim in making exquisite masks.

MANUSCRIPT WRITING

The practice of worshipping religious scriptures led to the emergence of paintings in manuscripts.

MUSIC

Ankiya geet and Borgeets are the various types of music which have been composed since the time of Srimanta Sankardev.

FESTIVALS

Various festivals are celebrated all over Majuli. Besides the Sattriya festivals, the tribal inhabitants of the land have their own colorful festivals.

BOAT MAKING

Boat making has been practiced in Majuli since the time of the arrival of diverse communities on the Island.

THE PEOPLE OF MAJULI

Majuli boasts of a multiplicity of ethnic tribes, which have contributed immensely to its rich and colourful cultural heritage.

OTHER CULTURAL ACTIVITIES

FISHING has been the traditional occupation of a section of people since the beginning of human habitation on the island.

POTTERY is a traditional form of cottage industry of Kumar community of Majuli. Pots were generally exchanged for paddy, which is the staple food of the inhabitants of this island.

WEAVING is an important aspect of the cultural life of the people of the Majuli Island.

HAND AND BAMBOO CRAFT is the tradition of carving miniatures of gods, goddesses and their incarnation. It has been carried on through several generations by the Bhakats of Sattras and the villagers.

PROPOSED RESOURCES