This volume is an exploration of the various forms of bonds and attachments by which individuals in the Himalayan regions of India and Nepal are bound to their groups. To grasp these phenomena adequately, the book proposes a new analytical approach through the concept of belonging.

The book is based on several case studies carried out by anthropologists, historians, and geographers who help bring together rich ethnographical data from different regions of the Himalayas. Organized in three parts, it describes the interactions between local forms of belonging and new forms of classification imposed through national integration or modes of politics.

The book analyzes different societal formations in various historical periods and captures the ongoing change in them. Fundamentally, this collaborative publication is an attempt to go beyond (and beneath) identity constructions and to call into question the idea of permanence implied by the term.

Politics of Belonging: Identity and State-Formation in Nagaland

Politics of Belonging: Identity and State-Formation in Nagaland

Politics of belonging: Identity and state-formation in Nagaland


The present study attempts to trace and analyse how the politics of belonging contributed to the formation of Naga identity and statehood.1 The focus here is on the transformation of the scattered Naga tribes into a common national identity. It is argued that the Naga national identity and state-formation are related to each other and the ‘creation’ of the two has taken place in the form of interlinked processes.

The chapter is divided in two parts. The first deals with the necessary conceptual preliminaries. The second discusses the process of identity and state-formation2 in Nagaland in the context of the politics of belonging.3

Part I: Conceptual Framework

This part deals with the existing ...

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