Pariah | Viramma | Granta Magazine



‘All my children have been buried where they died’

I am the midwife here. I was born in the village of Velpakkam in Tamil Nadu, and when I married, I came to Karani, my husband’s village. I was still a child then. I am a farm worker and, like all my family, I am a serf, bonded to Karani’s richest landowner. We are Pariahs. We live apart from the…


Viramma is an agricultural worker and midwife in Karani, a village near Pondicherry in south-east India. She told her life story, over ten years, to Josiane and Jean-Luc Racine. It was published in France as Une vie paria (Pocket), and in the UK as Viramma: Life as an Untouchable (Verso).

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Translated by Will Hobson

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