The Kalasha continue to practice their polytheistic religion as the final Kafirs of the Hindu Kush. The Kalasha people hold feasts in honor of their deities and sacrifice goats, milk, bread, cheese, and juniper.
They live in three small valleys in the northwest hilly region of Pakistan, near to the Afghan border. The homes cling to the hillsides to avoid occupying the fertile soil of the lowlands and are ideally matched to the local environment.
A gender-based dichotomy that permeates daily life and is inextricably tied to the Kalasha people's conception of the cosmos and their religion is one of the culture's defining characteristics. While transhumance target husbandry in the high pastures is managed by the men, irrigation agriculture is managed by the women, who also process wheat and corn in numerous watermills distributed across the valleys.
The kazi, or Guardian of Tradition, is in charge of crucial elements like ceremonies and local laws in a community without a written language. The kazi is a storyteller who embraces Kalasha history. However, being a minority in the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, the Kalasha must continue to safeguard their native tongue, distinctive culture, and ancient religion.
International researchers have long been drawn to the Kalasha, and this lavishly illustrated book carries on a well regarded tradition of Danish study of Central Asia.
Mytte Fentz, a master's degree holder Moesgaard, Denmark has worked and published in both subjects since receiving a degree in medieval archaeology and ethnology from Aarhus University. She has spent several years residing with the Kalasha for extended periods of time, sharing their joys and tribulations in daily life. Her combined academic disciplines offer a fresh perspective on how to describe this amazing mountain people based on a significant amount of field data that has been gathered.