The Nagas

Hill Peoples of Northeast India

Project Introduction The Naga Database

book : 'Konyak Nagas' by Christoph von Furer-Haimendorf, (1969)

caption: Chapter Three. Phases of Life
caption: boys new role in morung; the morung as a joint work group
medium: books
ethnicgroup: Konyak
location: Wakching
person: Furer-Haimendorf/ C.
date: 1969
refnum: with permission from Holt, Rinehart & Winston, New York69:7
text: After initiation boys ate most of their meals in their parents' house and used the morung mainly as a dormitory and club. Nevertheless, with entry into the morung a boy's daily routine changed drastically. While previously he had spent his days with his playmates in the village or accompanied his parents to their fields, where he helped them by doing light work, he was now the member of an organized gang, which had its definite function in the economic life of the village. When after the first monsoon showers the overgrown paths had to be cleared, the task of removing the growth and repairing the paths fell to the labor gangs of the morung, and several age groups would work for hours with hoes and dao. At the time of building a house or rebuilding a morung the boys of that morung carried bamboos and palm leaves, and did most of the thatching. Messages to friendly neighboring villages had to be carried by junior boys, who usually went on such errands in twos or threes. Above all, however, the labor gangs of the morung were employed in cultivation. They worked not only on the morung fields but went by rote to work on the fields of the gang members' parents. Wealthy men could hire such a gang, and the wages earned belonged to the gang as a whole and were used for the purchase of supplies for celebrations.