Monthly Archives: February, 2013

प्रेम एउटा कोलाज

suresh_dhakal

Suresh Dhakal

आज मेरो गाई हेर्ने पालो
राधा पनि जान्छ्यौ कि गोठालो ?

कुनै आस्तिक प्रौढले सुनेजस्तो रहेन, यो भजन मेरा लागि । बैँसालु उत्सुकताले भर्खर-भर्खर प्रवेश गर्दै गर्दा सुनेको हुँ, पशुपति किराँतेश्वरको डाँडामा । मलाई त रुमानी प्रेमगीत लाग्यो त्यो पनि । डेटिङका लागि कुनै अमूक स्थानमा भेट्नका लागि समेत पनि एसएमएस गर्नुपर्ने आजका घुसघुसे प्रेमीहरूका लागि त ठाडो चुनौती थियो, त्यो । अव्यक्त प्रेमीका लागि ठूलै प्रेरणा । त्यस प्रेमगीतले गाई गोठालो जाँदाका मेरा किशोर रहस्यलाई उत्खनन गरिरहेजस्तो लाग्थ्यो । त्यो म बाँचेको समाजको प्रेमशास्त्र थियो, सायद ।

प्रेमको समाजशास्त्र

नयाँ पत्रिकाबाट प्रेमका बारेमा लेखिदिने अनुरोध कल रिसिभ गरेपछि झट्ट दिमागमा आएको पहिलो सन्दर्भ यसै नयाँ पत्रिकामा केही पहिले छापिएको शीर्षक थियो : यो छिपछिपे प्रेमको युग हो । (२००८—०७—१४, सोमबार) । मुलुकका अगुवा समाजशास्त्री चैतन्य मिश्रको अवलोकन थियो त्यो । अहिले प्रेमबारे लेख्नेहरूका लागि ‘पन्च लाइन’ ।

उनको हेराइमा ‘बजारको दबाब र सामाजिक संरचनाले प्रेमलाई गाढा बन्न दिँदैन । फास्टफुड प्रेम भनेको यही हो । यो कतिखेर सकिन्छ, थाहा हुँदैन । त्यसैले बिहान-बेलुकी पे्रमी-प्रेमिकाले भेट्नुपर्ने, एक-अर्काको तारिफ गरिरहनुपर्ने, उपहार दिइरहनुपर्ने भएको हो ।’

उफ ! प्रेमलाई जोगाइराख्न पनि यत्रो टन्टा । यो झमेला ! उनका अनुसार अहिलेको स्वतन्त्र पुस्ता प्रेममा पनि स्वतन्त्रता चाहन्छ । अर्थात् प्रेमको प्रकार समाजको अवस्थितिले निर्धारण गर्छ । हजुर, प्रेम देशकालअनुसारको हुन्छ, समय, स्थानसापेक्ष हुन्छ । प्रेमको रहर त शाश्वत होला, तर शैली र व्यवहार भने फरक हुन्छ ।

तर, उपभोक्तावादी पुँजीवादी चरित्र काठमाडौं, ठूला सहर हुँदै र सहरको सिको गर्दै गाउँ-गाउँ पसिरहेछ । गाउँका तरुनी-तन्नेरी सहरियाजस्तै बनेका छन् । अझ यसो भनौँ, गाउँकाले र सहरकाले देख्ने, सुन्ने, सिक्ने र भोग्ने कुरा उस्तै-उस्तै भइसके । समय र स्थानको भेदविहीन उत्तरआधुनिक चरित्र निर्माण भएको छ । सहर गाउँ पसेको छ । प्रेमको सहरिया शैली पनि गाउँ पसेको छ । सहर र गाउँको सीमा पातलिँदै गएको छ भन्ने थाहा पाउन तरुनी-तन्नेरीको व्यवहार र रहन-सहनको अध्ययनबाट पनि सकिन्छ । गाउँ-घरतिर जाँदा, बूढापाका त भन्ने गर्छन्, ‘गाउँ गाउँजस्तो कहाँ रह्यो र ? सब छाडा भइसके ।’ Continue reading →

Love birds in cage

Avash Bhandari (24)Avash Bhandari

* (This essay was originally written on February 4, 2012 and most arguments advanced here based on my limited reading seem too naïve to me a year after. In spite of it I think this is worthy a piece to share with friends laugh at my past eccentricities.)

Valentine’s Day is arguably the most commercialized ritual in Kathmandu among the youths. On the account that it is devoid of any popular cultural roots whatsoever in this part of the world, it can also be called an event that sprang from the top (tuppa bata palaeko). Roles of post 1990 mass media and its counterpart neo-liberalism cannot be neglected for a “proper” and “pop” understanding of it. This writer knew about the existence of such a day from Nepal television and “pop songs” it broadcasted. “Love” was the privileged discourse in the private boarding school amongst those of us who grew up and grew old with the parliamentary multiparty democracy after the so called end of history and ideology in some part of the world. As we grew up we were educated more about “love” and Valentine’s Day (so difficult this word was to pronounce) but were we taught what really was or what actually sells?     .                      

History of “love”

“Love” or “exclusive love” as is popular today is a cultural by-product of capitalism. A clear difference can be deciphered in the pattern of relationships between men and women over the long period of humans’ social evolution.

When feudalism was the prevailing organizing principle and production mode, society revolved around caste, clan, and kinship and other forces of ascription. “Love” between individuals before marriage was therefore almost non existent. After marriage too, obligations and rituals governed conjugal relationship. As feudal society’s values emphasized honor and loyalty, relations between individuals were hardly “free” and at best women were men’s desirable object to “do love”. “Love” in feudal society could not originate without fertile ground for individualism. Continue reading →

Guest Lecture Series – II

V_DAY_2013

Reading material for discussion:

Jitiya, A Ritual of Tharu Women

Rina Chaudhary (22)rinachaudary

Nepal is a country followed with variety of culture and multiple diversity among them Tharu is considered as the dominant ethnic groups in Nepal. They are indigenous inhabitants of Terai, the narrow strip of flat and fertile land that lies between the mountains close to the border with India. According to Arjun Gunaratne, Their physical features indicate a Tibeto-Burman ancestry; but because of the proximity of the Indian plane their language is similar to Bhojpuri and Hindi, (a type of Indian language). The Tharus have unique rituals, festivals, and music, while their clothes and ornaments are similar to some ethnic groups of India. Tharues celebrate their own rituals and festivals. Each rituals and festivals have caries Tharu identities.

Jitiya is one of the most important ritual that is celebrated for three days. It is especially celebrated by Tharu women in Chitwan and Nawalparasi Districts of Nepal. Jitiya is a symbol of jit (victory). Jitiya falls on the month of Ashwin (September – October). It is celebrated for three days on Saptami (the seventh day of dark fortnight), Astami (the eighth day of dark fortnight) and Nawomi (the ninth day of dark fortnight). They takeBarta (fasting) for the good omen for their family and children. They do not only pray for their children and family but also they pray for collective well fare. During the period, women worship to god Bishnu, Shiva and Sun. However, Jitbahan is the main deity ofjitiya. The main part of the ritual, women worship the nature. Women take Barta and do not eat anything for a whole day. Women celebrate Jitiya by singing songs and dancing. Continue reading →

The Family by F Engels

Avash Bhandari

Avash Bhandari (24)

This essay is a summary of a second chapter “The Family” from F. Engels’ celebrated monograph ‘The Origin of Family, Private Property and State’. Here, Engels discusses on the forms and features of families, from primitive past to the modern day (this book was first published in 1884). He builds his arguments upon researches of Lewis H. Morgan, who divided human history into three grand stages namely savagery, barbarism and civilization based on evolutionary model. Congruent with these stages were the forms of families: ‘For savagery- group marriage, for barbarism- pairing marriage and for civilization – monogamy.’ Let us dwell upon Engels’ theoretical approaches first.

Engels calls for a flat rejection on any approaches that rests upon physiological reduction and comparative sketch with other members of animal kingdom. He also adds that the relation between man and woman emerge from the actual conditions of life not from the religious ideas men hold. Convinced of his historical or ‘evolutionary’ materialist approach Engels subsides all conclusions that are based on parallels drawn between their (anthropoid apes) family forms and those of primitive man.

The most primitive form of marriage of which ‘undeniable evidence can be found in history’ is group marriage. We can infer from this the existence of less sophisticated and simpler forms of marriage and family. It is very likely that a period of promiscuous intercourse corresponded to the period of transition from animality to humanity. “Promisculty was characterized by the absence of any restrictions on sexual intercourse. There were no barriers set up by custom regulating / prohibiting sexual relations. Even the sexual relations between parents and children aroused little or no disgust ‘prior to the invention of incest (and it is an invention of utmost value). Sexual intercourse Continue reading →