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North East- Meghalaya- Garo Tribe
Garo is a hilly tribe of North Eastern India in Meghalaya. They migrated over 400 years ago from Tibet. Meghalaya is one of the coldest regions in India, along with being prone to earthquakes, floods, cyclonic storms and landslides. They had to make a house that would be compatible in this environment.
The Garo tribe follow Christianity and are also a matrilineal society. Their economic life revolves around agriculture and farming. They follow jhum cultivation or shifting agriculture on terrace lands.
The plan of the house is linear and rectangular with a shed under the house for the cows. The house is primarily on bamboo stilts. The chief’s house is slightly bigger than the common man's house due to gathering space required in front of the chiefs house for meetings.
The house has divisions according to gender and privacy along with certain parts of the house only being used during festivals.
These houses have an extensive use of bamboo in various ways but can still accommodate a hearth in the house safely.
As it is a matrilineal society, the men are groomed in art, cultivation and games and on marriage move into the wife’s house.
North East- Manipur- Meitei Tribe
The Meitei people are an ethnic group in Manipur, a northeastern state of india. In meitei society, the traditional yumjao house is symbolic of status in society. Which is seen through the quality of the raw materials used to build.
We have studied Andro Village on Manipur 862 metres above sea level. They follow sanamahism, due to which their house is around the tulsi plant that they worship.
The house shows a clear division with respect to privacy and gender.
Manipuri ancestors deduced the similarities of the houses with human bodies, i.e. human bodies have different compartments for distinctive organs; thus Manipuri houses have different rooms and compartments for each organ of the family.
A “Meitei Yumjao” is built with locally available material like bamboo of different strength and size according to the requirement, thus, it is economical, environmentally friendly and job generating for the society.
With the development and improvement of lifestyles in various ways, everyone felt the need for the best space and facilities to live in which he can afford. These brought in the change in dwelling structure technically, culturally and aesthetically and led to the extinction of Meitei Yumjao.
Karishma Kaur Hooda Rashmita Dake
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