Harmony in History: “Unveiling the History of Women Tea Plantations Workers Through Jhumur Songs”

This article explores the cultural importance of Jhumur songs within the colonial tea plantation societies of Assam. Originating from the Sadani language, Jhumur is a key narrative instrument reflecting the life and challenges of the tea garden laborers, particularly women. The study analyzes Jhumur songs and historical documents to expose the deceptive recruitment and exploitation tactics employed by the British rulers and tea estate owners. It delves into specific Jhumur songs to depict themes of migration, exploitation, and cultural defiance. The research introduces two theoretical models—the “migration-exploitation strategies nexus” and the “model of colonial hegemony and cultural resistance”—to examine the social and cultural interplay. In conclusion, the paper underscores the persistent resilience and cultural identity of the tea garden communities in colonial Assam, as conveyed through the emotive stories in Jhumur lyrics.