The concept of diaspora has been much debated during the past decade in terms of the essential and additional features that go with it, arguing which groups or communities could beuld not be designated as diaspora. The Indian diaspora today, with a strong community constituting more than 20 million and spreading across a hundred countries, continues to grow in size and making its transnational presence felt. This collection of essays traces some of the plurality with the Indian context as well as in the context of globalization, and transnationalism.
The book discusses the migratory movements that have led to the formation of the Indian diaspora and formation to diasporic practices-the ways and means of remembering and enacting diasporic belonging and the sites and spaces where such narratives of belonging are performed and how these issues are played out through texts, and rituals such as pilgrimages and building temples.
Chapter 2: ‘Positioning’ the Indian Diaspora: The South-East Asian Experience
‘Positioning’ the Indian Diaspora: The South-East Asian Experience
Indians abroad have, of late, received widespread publicity in the Indian media. Since 2003, the Indian state has joined the fanfare, organising the annual Pravasi Bharatiya Divas to honour its diaspora. It is now commonplace for Indians to remark on how well they have done abroad. Others observe that non-resident Indians (NRIs) are the ‘new Brahmins’, the veracity of which is easily verifiable through Internet marriage sites where grooms from the diaspora are most favoured. Yet, such celebratory views have been shaped by the success of Indians in the United States (US) and other western countries. Needless to say, the Indian diaspora in the US, while heterogeneous in itself, reflects ...