University of Cambridge > > Wolfson College Lunchtime Seminar Series - Wednesdays of Full Term > The Honour of Sharing : the Sharing of Honour

The Honour of Sharing : the Sharing of Honour

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How does a Lovari extended family enact the sharing of material resources, and of intangible gifts conveyed through gesture, dance, song and speech? How do these practices confer identity and what may they have in common with those of certain communities in Europe, perhaps in the Middle East and Central Asia, and in their country of origin – India? After a brief overview of current knowledge and hypotheses regarding the origin of Romani communities, with some comments on their distribution in Europe today, I will present points of view put forward by Romani and other authors in the ongoing debate about how the ancestors of today’s Romani communities may have fitted into the Hindu caste system. A resolution of this issue will need to be informed by new insights gained from linguistics and genetics, but also by the cultural practices and the actual religious beliefs of Romani communities in Europe and those of – perhaps related – groups in the Middle East, Central Asia, and India itself. To illustrate the culture and beliefs of Romani communities, I will show extracts from the video of a recent wedding celebrated by a Lovari family.

This talk is part of the Wolfson College Lunchtime Seminar Series - Wednesdays of Full Term series.

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