No culture we know is innocent of ‘encounter’ with another. In India, even remote hill-tribes like the matriarchal, pastoral Todas have had visitors and visitations — their poetry has, for long, borrowed Sanskrit images. The Sanskrit of the ancient Vedas has non-Sanskritic tribal words. Even the primal innocence of the Garden of Eden, according to some, was seduced and destroyed by an alien Serpent, speaking a different tongue. A Persian proverb says, ‘God spoke to man in Persian, the Devil in Turkish.’ The Turks have, of course, a proverb in reverse.
KeywordsMaize Europe Kerosene Blindness Folk
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