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Majuli: Assam's Disappearing Island | 101 Traces

The largest river island in the world is in Assam. In 20 years, it may not exist anymore. 

Located on the Brahmaputra river in Assam, Majuli is a small island with a rich history. At the beginning of the 20th century, the island had a total area of 1250 square kilometres, but over time, as the river has flooded its banks, it has eroded down to just about 400 square kilometres. A place of surreal beauty, Majuli is home to a traditional mask-making art unique to the neo-Vaishnavite culture in Assam. Every year, a little more of the island washes away during the floods. Surveys suggest that in 20 years, this island may not even exist anymore. If it disappears, along with it will go the people, the culture, and the traditional arts that they've practiced for generations. Unless something is done to preserve this island, a part of our culture will be washed away with it.

Related: No Amount Of Google Searches Can Describe The Beauty Of Majuli, Assam

101 Traces looks at the last of anything: ethnic communities, folk craftsmen, disappearing trades, forgotten people. It sketches portraits of these unique individuals, locked in a battle they cannot win: a battle against the future. Together, they represent the dying whispers of ancient heritage and traditional individuality. As India moves towards homogenized global pop culture, 101 Traces honors the people, the objects, and the skills that connect us to our ancient identity.