by Tame Ramya and Bhaboklang Sohkhlet
The existence of anthropology as an academic and research discipline in Arunachal Pradesh is at infancy. The traditional ethnographic studies among the tribes were initiated by the early British administrators, missionaries, travellers, explorers,etc. Professor Furer-Haimendorf and Verrier Elwin were perhaps the first professional anthropologist and ethnographer to delve into the various cultural aspects of Arunachal tribes. The official recognition of the discipline took place with the introduction of Arunachal Institute of Tribal Studies (AITS) in 1995 under Arunachal University (Now Rajiv Gandhi University, Doimukh) which was established in 1984; for which anthropology as a discipline was introduced in 2001. The establishment of the Directorate of Research, Government of Arunachal Pradesh and introduction of Anthropology at the University and College levels significantly count towards the development of this discipline in the state. Research contributions have been witnessed over time in the field of social and cultural aspects of the tribes. Though not completely absent, researches on physical-biological aspects, genetic studies, linguistic and archaeology, growth, nutrition and health have been witnessed but limited. Taking into consideration the broad scope of Anthropology as a discipline of holistic approach, this paper urge for a need of wider coverage of studies in terms of research, projects, and publications in developing tribal state like Arunachal Pradesh. The relevance of Anthropology in the state could be ensured through rigorous research taken up at various levels of standard, support from the government, collaboration between academic institutions and funding agencies. At the same time, its dimension and scope as a relevant research and academic discipline could be broadened and expanded through addressing new research questions, formulation of hypotheses, and through standard conduct of empirical researches.
Ramaya T., Soket B. 2018. Anthropology in Arunachal Pradesh: Genesis, Establishments, and Contribution, Dera Natung Government College Research Journal, 3, 76-95.