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Old 15th November 2018, 06:02 PM   #1
Drabant1701
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I have this photo in my collection. Looks like India to me. Can anyone pin the location more precisely?
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Old 18th November 2018, 07:19 AM   #2
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My vote would be Sri Lanka
the chest decorations and much of the headwear is typical for there. More than that I cannot say
cheers
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Old 18th November 2018, 01:10 PM   #3
Ian
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I would also go with Sri Lanka.

As an aside, the third individual from the left in the front row appears to show the typical features of achondroplasia dwarfism.

Ian.
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Old 18th November 2018, 08:29 PM   #4
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I believe Sri Lanka also.

In some South and South East Asian societies, dwarfs and physically handicapped people were kept by both courts and upper class households as servants and entertainers.

Some commentators have been critical of this practice. In fact, it was a form of social support, in a society where a handicapped person cannot perform normal work, and where there is no state system of support for the handicapped, it becomes a duty of those who can afford to do so, to support those who cannot support themselves.
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Old 20th November 2018, 05:02 PM   #5
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Thanks for your replies. Sri Lanka it is then. Amittedly I know nothing about Sri Lankan culture, I do however i find a bit odd is that the man in the middle has no jewelry or fancy hat, one would think that that position in a photo would be occupied by a person of status.
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Old 20th November 2018, 10:26 PM   #6
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I wonder if those second row fellows were some sort of bodyguard/warrior class.
There are two without head covering and two with; none are wearing jewelry.
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Old 21st November 2018, 02:07 PM   #7
Jim McDougall
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Quote:
Originally Posted by A. G. Maisey
I believe Sri Lanka also.

In some South and South East Asian societies, dwarfs and physically handicapped people were kept by both courts and upper class households as servants and entertainers.

Some commentators have been critical of this practice. In fact, it was a form of social support, in a society where a handicapped person cannot perform normal work, and where there is no state system of support for the handicapped, it becomes a duty of those who can afford to do so, to support those who cannot support themselves.




A most interesting note on this circumstance in these cultures and very well explained. I have always very much appreciated your keen insights into the deeper aspects of the cultures whose arms and arts we collect.

Thank you Alan!
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Old 21st November 2018, 07:23 PM   #8
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Goes with the territory Jim. Anybody who has been associated with Jawa and Indonesia as long as I have would understand pretty much the same things.
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Old 21st November 2018, 08:16 PM   #9
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The gentlemen with the shell chest pieces and the two at the back with the spiky headdress I associate with the ceremonial dance and drum groups that welcome dignitaries to a meeting/dinner etc for a special occasion (I was in Sri Lanka earlier this year and they wore essentially the same outfits)
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