community pride

Voices from the outside

Dr Imsuchila Kichu is an Assistant Professor of English at Cotton University, Assam. The following is an excerpt from a piece penned by her reflecting upon Naga women and society from the perspective of an insider who has lived away from her community.


Weaving Luntaya Acheik: The Making of Myanmar Traditional Dress

This photo is from a book written by U Shwe Htun about textile industry and textile design. The author traces the history of acheik and the processes of acheik from its origin until 2005. It is a good source to understand the acheik's history, its evolution, how to weave in order to get an acheik and how to preserve it. It explores how acheik  was not allowed to be woven in Bagan period and in the Innwa period a lower quality of it was woven. But in the late Innwa and the early Konbaung period, a higher quality was encouraged.

The Network of Women: Weaving Freedom

A popular success story of the North-East Network (NEN) is Chizami Weaves where the NEN together with a network of 600+ local women from Chizami and the neighbouring villages of Phek district in Nagaland built ‘Chizami Weaves’  an enterprise that aimed to preserve and promote the rich textile weaving tradition of Nagaland. While empowering rural women economically, it also gave them a voice and agency to bring about positive changes in their families and communities. Gender relations within homes are changing.

Weaving Luntaya Acheik Then and Now: The Making of Myanmar Traditional Dress

The Saunders art, gallery and museum (see photo) was opened on the August 2nd 2004 as a memorial of 90th anniversary of the Saunders Weaving and Vocational Institute. It was supported by the Small Scale Industries department from Myanmar and Kanasarwa College from Japan. The objective of establishing the museum is for the developing of the vocational schools studies and small scale industries in rural area. There are three rooms: museum, demonstration room and gallery.

The Network of Women

I am Wekoweu Tsuhah (Akole) and I belong to the Chakhesang tribe of Nagaland. I am a women’s rights activist and a development practitioner, an advocate for gender equality, social and environmental justice. While growing up, I experienced fear and rage as I lived through armed conflict, alcoholism, domestic violence, poverty and these shaped the person I am today. I am passionate about working with people, women in particular; but it is only after I started working with a women’s rights organization – NEN, the North-East Network, did I truly realize and recognize these social injustices.

What is the most beautiful place in Taungthaman: From children's memories

What is the most beautiful thing or place in your village? The question asked was to the young school children from Taungthaman Village.

The first drawing is of U Pain Bridge and the second one of Taung Tha Man Thitsar.Many children also drew pictures of their grandparents, Kyauk Taw Gyi Pagoda, Taung Tha Man Lake.

We asked them to explain their drawings - what they know about the particular place or thing -  the dos and dont's.

Curriculum and Fostering Pride in Locality

Dr. Thidar Htwe Win drew small engagement curriculum to foster value and connection of the local children with their locality. To do this, the school children were asked - "what is the most beautiful and valuable places for them in their village and around it."  By asking like this, we could draw out what the children unconsiously valued.

At the very first they were too shy to speak in front of the crowd. We persuaded them with incentive of rewarding them with cute stickers. This helped them to become more engaged. We could even create a competitive environment among them.

Ride for the initiation ceremony

“In the initiation ceremony, people borrow horse cart from me. But indeed, they prefer the bullock cart that decorated well with the crystal and golden paint to my horse cart. In the past (around 20 years ago), this idea that the bullock cart was more valuable was more obviously seen.”  This was shared by a lady who is one of people who lend cart to others.

I found that the people are still proud to use the bullock cart for the initiation ceremony. 


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