Saronik talks to Shweta Krishnan, doctoral candidate in Anthropology at George Washington University.
She speaks about how she uses Giles Deleuze and Félix Guattari’s concept of deterritorialization in her work on the emergent religious discourse of Donyipolo in the Indian states of Arunachal Pradesh and Assam.
Shweta thinks with the geological metaphors and mythological stories of the Mising and Adi tribes, and brings them into conversation with Deleuze and others. Donyipolo (sometimes referred to as Donyipoloism) is an emergent discursive formation shaped by the efforts of the Adi, the Mising and other Tani tribes to revive, reform and improvise their ancestral ethical practices since the 1980s. Donyipolo is the name given to an omniscient and omnipotent force that catalyzes the formation of the material world in Tani cosmologies. Shweta examines how the revivalists reimagine religiosity in and through their efforts to rebuild their relationship with Donyipolo.
Image: photo taken by Shweta on the way to Majuli from Jorhat by boat.