University Of Tasmania

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Understanding the Monga vis-à-vis famine in Northern Bangladesh

journal contribution
posted on 2023-05-21, 21:48 authored by Iffat AraIffat Ara, Elahi, KM
The term 'Monga' is purely a local term with a connotation of a range of scarcities that suddenly affects the people of northern Bangladesh during a particular period of the year. A great deal of misconception and misinterpretation prevails among the academics in defining the Monga syndrome in northern Bangladesh. The misunderstanding of the Monga revolves mainly around famine condition, food security or insecurity based on a preconceived notion that hardly takes into account the characteristic connotation of the term as it prevails in the affected area. In fact, the syndrome is very much related to dwindling purchasing power and widespread lack of alternative employment opportunity perpetuating a chronic impoverishment among certain socioeconomic groups in northern Bangladesh - a condition very much away from a famine or near-famine situation and food security problem. Despite its significance in terms of localized crisis and socio-economic consequences, the Monga is still a less understood or misunderstood issue for many people. While attempting to explain the Monga syndrome, this paper establishes the linkages between the Monga and poverty through a generalized theoretical construct. The theoretical construct of the Monga syndrome indicates a depressing and threatening phenomenon for northern Bangladesh.


Publication title

Oriental Geographer










Tasmanian Institute of Agriculture (TIA)


Bangladesh Geographical Society

Place of publication


Repository Status

  • Restricted

Socio-economic Objectives

Economic growth; Assessment and management of Antarctic and Southern Ocean ecosystems; Environmentally sustainable information and communication services not elsewhere classified