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Shaping Membership, Defining Nation: The Cultural Politics of African Indians in South Asia

ISBN: 9780739114292
Publisher: Lexington Books
Publication Date: 2008-08-21
Number of pages: 244
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Shaping Membership, Defining Nation explores and interprets the social politics, religion, and history of Africans (Habshis/Siddis) in Karnataka of South India. Focusing on the continuous dialog between African Indian historical formations and contemporary power structures, Pashington Obeng clearly explains the process of constructing socio-political and religious mores to respond to India's religious, socio-economic, and caste systems. The study begins by contextualizing the history of Africans in India before moving onto a sociological study. Pashington Obeng examines the formal and non-formal religious customs that stress African Indian agency in appropriating and shaping new forms of Indianness as well as African Diasporic realities. The book concludes with an important analysis of African Indian folksongs and dances. Shaping Membership, Defining Nation is a ground-breaking study of interest to scholars of African History and contemporary Indian society.

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