Ethnographical views on valaikāppu. A pregnancy rite in Tamil Nadu

Ethnographical views on valaikāppu. A pregnancy rite in Tamil Nadu

Hancart Petitet, P. and Pragathi, V (2007).

Indian Anthropologist. 37(1), January: 117-145.

In Tamil Nadu, the end of the first pregnancy is marked by the celebration of the valaikāppu rite. This article provides an ethnography of the rite as it is performed in rural areas by scheduled castes people. The first part will present the social context of reproduction as well as the ritual aspects of the ceremony. The second part will focus on the social interactions in which the performance takes place. The valaikāppu ceremony will thus be seen as a prism to study various symbolic, medical, social and economical aspects of motherhood in contemporary Indian society.


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