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Thoughts on Jallikkattu

Jallikkattu has been in the news - and is proving to be a sharp dividing factor between people. We will look into the cultural continuity of Jallikkattu, its purpose, its position in the rural economy and agriculture, and the problems associated. I am not going into the power play behind the NGO / PIL / Supreme Court nexus that is hell bent on stopping this game - though we will see briefly how it ties up with the continuing colonization of India.

First things First: Jallikkattu (சல்லிக்கட்டு) is NOT bull fighting. "Bull Fighting" as a term creates a negative connotation where successive players try and kill the bull. In Jallikkattu, the bull is not killed. In fact, the multitude of men in the play do not even fight the bull. Henceforth, we will not use the term bullfight to describe this sport. There is a strong historic reason to not call it bull fighting.  The technically correct term for this sport in tamizh is ஏறு தழுவல் - "Embracing (தழுவல்) the Bull (ஏறு)".…