Research at the Department of Bhojpuri, Folklore and Oral Traditions

Ongoing Research

A reference work of 30 000 entries
Compilation work completed
Final Editing work underway for Press copy to be published in India.
  In the series of pre-recorded audio cassettes of the wedding songs of different linguistic groups in Mauritius, the Department will soon undertake the production of another project relating to traditional Tamil wedding songs of Mauritius.
  In accordance with the national policy of the Government of Mauritius to promote educational and cultural growth, expecially in the field of pre-primary schooling and early childhood development in Mauritius as well as in Rodrigues, the present project aims at producing a second Learning Kit which will consist of :
  1. A pre-recorded cassette of 10 or 12 singing-games
  2. An illustrated handbook
  3. A video manual

The project will be worked out by the Department - MGI in collaboration with :

The Ministry of Education and Scientific Research
The Ministry of Rodrigues
The Ministry of Arts and Culture
The Mauritius College of the Air

The task of building up the collection of folk material for the archival collection as well as for the Folk Museum of the Department is underway and the collection presently counts around 200 recorded cassettes, slides, photographs and cultural objects.

'Bhojpuri folk song' is best understood as a very broad term that includes many different types of singing and songs of many periods as performed by the singers.

The bulk of Bhojpuri folk songs of Mauritius comes from the past.  Much of the repertory, which travelled all the way to Mauritius, is known to have been currently used in India in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries.  Some are earlier in origin, and it is likely that some very old melodies and lyrics have survived having been adapted to modern forms.

The Indian Immigrants in Mauritius were the natural ambassadors of their culture and they possessed all the elements to recreate on the Mauritian scene, the diversity of the cultural and linguistic aspects as represented in India.

A monograph describing and analysing the old custom of tattooing among the Indian immigrants of North India in Mauritius and some ritualistic songs relating to same.

Primary and secondary source material to be identified locally at the Mauritius Archives, the National Library and other private libraries.

Project underway and being worked out through interviews in the south, north and western fishing villages of the island.

Research from primary and secondary sources at the Mauritius Archives, local as well as overseas libraries 1997-2001

Contact Person : Miss S. Ramdin
                             Head, Department of Bhojpuri, Folklore and Oral Traditions

Mahatma Gandhi Institute - Moka
Republic of Mauritius Tel.(230) 403 2000 Fax - (230) 433 2235