Expressing the Unexpressed: The Minicoy Islanders of Lakshadweep

  • Mohammad Nasir Ahmad


This chapter makes an attempt to present contemporary lifeways of the Muslim community of Minicoy Islanders of Lakshadweep, scheduled as a tribe in Indian Constitution, with a conscious effort of engaging historical approach to study the culture. The chapter studies sociocultural identity of assimilation and acculturation that has evolved over time in an interactive mode and therefore emphasizes on interdisciplinary methods and approaches. Primarily, the contemporary sociocultural structure showing contrasts like matrilinity and practice of monogamy along with Islam, and syncretic tradition like following Islamic tenets in marriage practice, is presented in a historical perspective.


Matrilineal society Minicoy islanders Maritime trade Trade route Ali Rajas Maldives Cultural admixture Status groups Circumcision Health and sanitation Social structure Islam 



The author likes to express his heartiest thanks to the islanders and the resource persons of Minicoy. Thanks to the administration of Lakshadweep that was very instrumental in facilitating the research in the island. We thank the Department of Anthropology which gave us opportunity to conduct the first field visit by which a bond has been developed between islanders and authors. The deepest thanks go to Mrs. Khatiza and Mr. Shareef Edurukage for their voluntary invested time during field visit and continuous help whenever needed.

Disclaimer The views expressed in the chapter are the views of the author and do not represent those of any organisation he is affiliated with.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mohammad Nasir Ahmad
    • 1
  1. 1.YUFIC Masters Programme for India, Centre for EthicsYenepoya UniversityMangaloreIndia

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