The Nagas

Hill Peoples of Northeast India

Project Introduction The Naga Database

published - extracts on the Nagas from 'Census of India, 1931 - Volume III - Assam Report'

caption: Appendix A. The effect on the tribes of the Naga Hills district of Contacts with civilization, by J.P. Mills, I.C.S
caption: contact with civilization
medium: reports
person: Mullan/ C.S.Mills/ J.P.
date: 1931
text: The conditions obtaining thrhoughout the Naga Hills district being fairly uniform, to deal with each tribe separately would entail much unnecessary repetition. I will therefore note on the district as a whole, drawing my examples from the Angami, Sema, Ao and Lhota Nagas, and the Thado Kukis.
text: In this area contact with civilization is brought about in two ways - by the visits of tribesmen to the plains lying along the base of the hills, and by the penetration of foreigners into the hills. The latter is by far the most important. Foreigners residing in the hills influence the culture and mode of life of the indigenous inhabitants in numerous ways - by administration, by missionary propaganda, by the innate tendency to imitate foreigners who display a culture in some ways regarded as "higher", by objects of trade imported from without, by the introduction of disease, by medical work, by communications that make travelling everywhere easy and safe, by the presence of an armed force strong enough to suppress any rising or inter-tribal war, and by countless subtle influences that react on the mentality of the villagers, usually to the detriment of their pride in their customs and history.