Livelihood Sustainability of Jamdani Weavers: A Case Study
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Jamdani is a traditional fine fabric produced around Dhaka, the capital of Bangladesh. Though produced and found in several parts of the country as well as in neighboring country also, it is commonly known as Dhakai (Made-in-Dhaka) Jamdani. UNESCO recognized Jamdani as intangible cultural heritage in 2013; while it got registered as Geographical Identification (GI) product of Bangladesh in 2016- the first recognized such product of the country. It requires traditional handloom weaving technique practiced by weavers in this region for centuries. This laborious, time consuming task of weaving also comes at the price of patience, aesthetics and intellectual merits of the weavers. A number of researches have been done on history, making, and improvement of Jamdani as a product itself, however, hardly any such could be found on livelihood sustainability of the people behind this age-old craft. The purpose of this research is to explore deeper inside the lives of Jamdani weavers, their sorrows and sufferings, dreams and aspiration, and to formulate ideas about how their livelihood situation can be made better. The research will enfold a number of real case scenarios, focused group discussion (FGD) method has been adopted to collect primary data, whereas a number of printed documents sourced from both the internet and published journals will be consulted for secondary data. Results showed that though afore-mentioned recognitions help protect the identity and ingenuity of this cultural heritage; weavers belonging to this craft need something more to translate these recognitions into their own livelihood benefits. The Jamdani weavers are passing their lives with sufferings. They are not happy with their livelihood because they do not get expected wage, cannot fulfill demand properly. It implies that, though many steps have been taken for holding on this tradition the ultimate beneficiaries are not the weavers. Necessary steps should be taken for ensuring sustainability in livelihood of Jamdani weavers.
- Papers of URS 2017