South Asian Americans are among the fastest growing ethnic groups in the United States. According to the most widely accepted definition, South Asian Americans are people who trace their origins to one or more of five countries: India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nepal, and Sri Lanka. Other definitions also include people from Afghanistan, the Maldives, Bhutan, Burma, and Tibet. For instance, the World Bank definition includes the seven countries India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nepal, Sri Lanka, the Maldives, and Bhutan but omits Afghanistan. These varying definitions shape which groups and regions are included in academic South Asia studies departments of the United States. This entry focuses on populations from the five countries of origin—India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nepal, and Sri Lanka—that are most commonly classified as South Asian.

Southern Asia ...

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