ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Bird Brothers of Delhi for Ecological Equity

Shaunak Sen’s All That Breathes tells the story of all living beings that share space in the urban ecology of Delhi through the rehabilitation of the black kite.

Ecology, though it has always been a concern of human civilisation, is a late discipline of science. In the modern, Western knowledge system, Ernest Hackel initiated the scientific discourse of ecology, followed by many others. In India, the Bombay Natural History Society (BNHS) pursued systematic scientific studies on the subject. Salim Ali, the birdman of India and a pioneer of BNHS, had a deep interest in birds in the natural, physical surroundings of his childhood, so much so that he devoted his life to ornithology. Ali’s scientific efforts in India pioneered the discipline of ornithology in particular and ecology in general. 

Since then, ecology has diversified its knowledge systems into many subfields, with the language too changing according to the context. The staunch vegetarianism of some communities in India and the religious or social superstitions attached to certain “non-vegetarian” birds are some of the sociocultural practices that are at the root of ecological injustice. The world view that inspires such ideas reflects the entrenchment of caste practices that separate not only human beings from one another but also humanity from nature.

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Updated On : 10th Oct, 2023
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