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Kinship and Marriage System among the Khasis of Bangladesh: A Study of Khasi Culture and Identity


  • Rajmoni Singha

    () (Department of Social Sciences and Humanities, Independent University, Bangladesh (IUB), Dhaka, Bangladesh)


The main objective of this study is to examine the kinship and marriage system among the Khasi (an ethnic minority in Bangladesh), who are the only communities in Bangladesh still strictly following a matrilineal system. The study also touches on some of the key challenges the Khasi face in maintaining their matrilineal culture. Most Khasi live in ancestral forests, but most of their land is formally lease-based from the Government of Bangladesh. Bangladesh is a country with one of the highest population densities in the world. The migration of non-tribal populations into the Khasis’ areas threatens the Khasis’ culture, livelihoods and even existence as an ethnic minority in Bangladesh. The Khasi matrilineal system is a unique system that is rooted in rich culture and needs urgent protection by the State and development stakeholders.

Suggested Citation

  • Rajmoni Singha, 2014. "Kinship and Marriage System among the Khasis of Bangladesh: A Study of Khasi Culture and Identity," Bangladesh Development Research Working Paper Series (BDRWPS) BDRWPS No. 24, Bangladesh Development Research Center (BDRC).
  • Handle: RePEc:bnr:wpaper:24

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    Khasi; indigenous people; women; Bangladesh;


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