Indian Street Performer with Monkey

by Ajay Gandhi

Postdoctoral Research Fellow

Max Planck Institute for the Study of Religious and Ethnic Diversity

The two photos show Indian street entertainers who use animals to fascinate the public. One man has trained a rhesus monkey to dance and jump, while he plays a drum and sings. The other man utilizes a lizard and rodent to sell medicine. Animals have long fascinated humans - they are central to our fables, our science, and sense of self. My ethnographic research examines urban aspirations in India. Animals, like cities, draw our attention, even as they remain opaque and impenetrable.

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