"Household in Akkaraipattu: Dowry and Domestic Organization among Matrilineal Tamils and Moors of Sri Lanka"

This paper describes and analyses the pattern of descent, marriage and household organization shared by Muslims and Tamils in the town of Akkaraipattu in the matrilineal belt of Sri Lanka, the Tamil-speaking, eastern coastal region. The author attempts to show that the Tamil /Moorish household is a nexus of some familiar South Asian institutions – dowry, marriage, worship, ritual pollution and matrilineal descent, but that these familiar institutions are configured and enacted in distinctive ways which serve to broaden our understanding of the field of ‘ethnographic possibility’ in South Asia.
McGilvray D.B
Source publication: 
Gray J.N. and D.J. Mearns (eds) Society From the Inside Out: Anthropological Perspectives on the South Asian Household, New Delhi, Newbut park and London, 1989