The myth of Maveli is the story of a leader under whom no inequality existed, before his kingdom was taken over by Vamana, a brahmin avatar of Vishnu, and Maveli was sent to the underworld. Mavelinadu or the land of Maveli, is a casteless, classless world, much like Jyotiba Phule’s Balirajya and Sant Ravidas’ Begumpura. It combines the memory of an egalitarian past, and a future that we may work towards building – through the destruction of oppressive constructs like caste, class and gender.
Mavelinadu is a space created exclusively by and for people belonging to marginalised castes and tribes. For 3000 years, the Brahmanical colonisation of the Indian subcontinent has dehumanised and oppressed our communities, while simultaneously erasing the histories of our culture and resistance. Our aim is to facilitate researchers, writers and artists to work freely and independently, to reframe, reclaim and debrahmanise these histories and highlight our lived experiences.
Mavelinadu is a publication house and cultural platform, with its pilot project being a magazine that will publish the work of marginalised caste creators both digitally and in print. The first issue of the magazine, titled Debrahmanising Gender, will investigate how caste and gender produce and sustain each other. For this issue, we invite submissions from people of all genders. We will center the work of queer, trans, non-binary people and women from the community, while building on existing anti-caste literature. We wish to eventually expand into supporting and archiving all kinds of work, and build a rich network for future collaborations and events for our communities.
We reject the literary and intellectual tradition of the so-called upper castes in this country that has not only excluded us, but has worked to justify the reproduction of the epistemic, structural and physical violence they enact on us everyday. Instead, our goal is to focus on oral traditions, folklore, and our own narratives of our past and world-building for our future – such as the story of Mavelinadu.