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Bhan Discusses the Himalayan Community of Brogpa in VICE Article

May 5, 2022


Mona Bhan

Mona Bhan

The Brogpa community in the Himalayas has a reputation for polyamorous marriages and being the "last Aryan village." Their system of polyamorous marriages was a way to consolidate land so that it wouldn't be divided by petty disputes. But the post-colonial idea of what a civilized society should be like has altered the traditions of the Brogpas. According to Mona Bhan, associate professor of anthropology and Ford-Maxwell Professor of South Asian Studies, cultural change is inevitable but it’s important to understand how those changes take place. 

“If cultural change is imposed or happening because of things not under their control, whether political or ecological, it is bound to make people anxious,” says Bhan. “So, while the Brogpas might have gotten used to it, the [polyamorous] marital patterns didn’t change on their own terms but because of government impositions that made these marital arrangements illegal.” Read more in the VICE article, "This ‘Aryan’ Community’s ‘Exotic’ Clothes and Polyamorous Marriages Mask Other Truths." 

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