Study of Unwritten Histories of Tribal Freedom Fighters of Kerala and Evaluate the Oral Histories and Historic Documents of Kurichya Tribal Freedom Fighters

Author: Rasna Parambath (Kerala Institute for Research Training and Development Studies of Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes, India)
Speaker: Rasna Parambath
Topic: Anthropological Linguistics
The (SCOPUS / ISI) SOAS GLOCAL CALA 2020 General Session


History is the process of documenting the past and the study of it Every human who is curious about the past learns history through these documents. In the Indian freedom struggle, one of the longest anti-colonial battle was Anglo-Kurichya war Happened Wayanad. This war, was fought together with Pazhassi Raja in Malabar in some period as well as Kurichyas alone, is one of the most important chapters in Indian Freedom Struggle and have documented properly in the History books. These battles are mostly known as Pazhassi battles. But when you read and interpret the history truthfully and correlate with the history of the wild Wayanad, we can understand that the true face of the battle was the tribes. Only a very limited number of tribes have been documented in History. It almost feels like even though they have a History, there is no Historiography! This thesis is an attempt to recreate the history of Tribes like Kurichyas, Mullukkurumas, etc who sacrificed their lives in the battle.

This thesis aims to recreate and document the history of Kurichya freedom fighters which is almost forgotten and exists solely in an oral format. The authenticity of such orally conveyed history is tried to be verified from the archive documents and other verified documentation. The study was conducted among the Kurichya tribe in Wayanad. The tools of data collection were through case studies using questionnaire interviews and unstructured interviews.

Most of the tribal freedom fighters like Yogimoola Machan, Thalaykkal / Thalakkara Chandu, Edathana Kungan, Edappini Panikkar Karanavar, etc are participated in this war. The archived documents were analyzed and correlated. Some of themwere found in the archived documents. The thesis could partially recreate the history of this tribal battle and present the history in a factually correct and comprehensive manner.

Keywords: Oral history, historiography, Tribe