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Worker preparing thread for sari weaving

Worker preparing thread for sari weaving

Photographer: Shivashanker Narayen

Medium: Photographic print

Date: 1870

Shelfmark: Photo 1000/52(4901)

Item number: 4901

Length: 17.6

Width: 23.7

Scale: Centimetres

Genre: Photograph

Photograph of a worker preparing thread for sari weaving in India, taken by Shivashanker Narayen in c. 1870, from the Archaeological Survey of India. Both British and Indian photographers assisted the archaeological survey. Narayen was an Indian photographer who contributed to the book 'The People of India', published by the India Museum in 1868-75. After photography was introduced into India in the 1840s it rapidly grew in popularity, particularly as a means to record the vast diversity of people and their dress, manners, trades, customs and religions. In the early 1860s the Governor General of India Lord Canning commissioned ethnographical photographs for the whole of India. This image showing a worker crouching beside a spinning wheel [charkha] and paying off thread to a reel at the right, is probably one of the series of views of cotton manufacture shown by Narayan at the Vienna Exhibition of 1873.

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