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Negotiating Assimilation, Exoticism, and Global Indian Modernity: Transnational Subject-Making of Second Generation Indians in Switzerland


Jain, Rohit (2011). Negotiating Assimilation, Exoticism, and Global Indian Modernity: Transnational Subject-Making of Second Generation Indians in Switzerland. Asiatische Studien / Études Asiatiques, 65(4):1001-1027.

Abstract

Second generation Indians socialized in Switzerland are confronted with manifold cultural norms and modes of cultural belonging to Switzerland and India, which they do not easily conform to. This paper tries to explore how second generation Indians negotiate these — often contradictory — disciplinary cultural norms, create alternative subjectivities, and carve out biographic niches in their transnational environment. Engaging two case studies based on ethnographic, biographic and discursive data, it is argued that second generation Indians are gravitating between the dominant forces of assimilation, exoticism, and Indian modernity. These processes are highly dynamic and take place at the conjuncture of biographical logics, transnational experience, and discursive and institutional changes. Further, it is argued that the transnational practices of second generation Indians are embedded in the global logic of social exclusion, which connects ethnicity and class to the productivity of global capital. The paper, thus, accounts for the processes of construction, de-construction, and re-construction of cultural norms and modes of belonging in the context of cultural globalization.

Second generation Indians socialized in Switzerland are confronted with manifold cultural norms and modes of cultural belonging to Switzerland and India, which they do not easily conform to. This paper tries to explore how second generation Indians negotiate these — often contradictory — disciplinary cultural norms, create alternative subjectivities, and carve out biographic niches in their transnational environment. Engaging two case studies based on ethnographic, biographic and discursive data, it is argued that second generation Indians are gravitating between the dominant forces of assimilation, exoticism, and Indian modernity. These processes are highly dynamic and take place at the conjuncture of biographical logics, transnational experience, and discursive and institutional changes. Further, it is argued that the transnational practices of second generation Indians are embedded in the global logic of social exclusion, which connects ethnicity and class to the productivity of global capital. The paper, thus, accounts for the processes of construction, de-construction, and re-construction of cultural norms and modes of belonging in the context of cultural globalization.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:Journals > Asiatische Studien / Études Asiatiques > Archive > 65 (2011) > 4
08 University Research Priority Programs > Asia and Europe
06 Faculty of Arts > Department of Social Anthropology and Cultural Studies
Dewey Decimal Classification:790 Sports, games & entertainment
390 Customs, etiquette & folklore
950 History of Asia
300 Social sciences, sociology & anthropology
180 Ancient, medieval & eastern philosophy
Language:English
Date:2011
Deposited On:13 Mar 2012 09:19
Last Modified:03 May 2016 20:10
Publisher:Schweizerische Asiengesellschaft / Verlag Peter Lang
ISSN:0004-4717
Permanent URL: http://doi.org/10.5167/uzh-58901

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