Mirjan Fort: A Halcyon of Feminism
The Konkan Coast runs from the Diu Daman in the north, traversing Maharashtra and Goa’s entirety before it meets and merges into the Canara coast of Karnataka and Malabar of Kerala. Whatever the demarcating names we give these natural geographic features, the cultural fluidity is more nuanced with a clear division conspicuously absent as cultures, customs and traditions gradually transform from one location to the other.
One such cultural artifact, we will explore here with a story of courage and grit or two. The West Coast of India is a curious place. It has a unique cultural heritage divergent from the rest of India. The salient features are to be found along the coastline’s entire length, all 1400 km of it. Starting from the upper reaches of Kutch, Diu-Daman, through the Konkan coast – Kolis of Maharashtra and Saraswats of Goa, Tulus of Karnataka and the Malabar region of Kerala, to the very tip of Indian mainland culminating close to Kanyakumari. The language varies as we progress southwards and much of the culture, but one underlying entity binds them together. The fact that all these societies are Matriarchal in makeup called the Aliyasanthana colloquially.
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