Servants of the Goddess

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06-Sumithra-Renuka-Yellamma2

Sumithra, right, is the head devadasis of Kalyana village. She is in charge of the jagha, a moveable shrine to the goddess Yellamma. Sumithra carries the jagha to the homes and farms of upper-caste landlords to perform rituals at weddings, name-giving ceremonies, when a buffalo calf is born, etc. Crops cannot be harvested until she has blessed the fields.


All photos and site © Catherine Rubin Kermorgant