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Being a Tibetan refugee in India


Bentz, Anne-Sophie (2012). Being a Tibetan refugee in India. Refugee Survey Quarterly, 31(1):80-107.

Abstract

This article deals with Tibetan refugees in India from the first arrivals in 1959, following the Dalai Lama's own flight to India, up to the present day. It focuses on legal issues and on questions pertaining to livelihood possibilities and the preservation of a distinct Tibetan identity in a context of increasingly numerous interactions with Indian society. It first explains how Tibetans managed to establish a strong exile community thanks to the possibilities offered by life in India, such as the constitution of relatively isolated refugee settlements. It then focuses on the challenges faced by Tibetans in India by analysing the tensions between being/remaining a refugee and acknowledging the diasporic status of the Tibetan exile community. It eventually concludes on the more recent trend towards further dispersion, notably to North America. For this, it makes use of the triangular relationship developed by refugee and diaspora scholars, such as Gabriel Sheffer, Bertrand Badie, Steven Vertovec, and Kim Butler, and more specifically of the refugee/diaspora community/host country segment of the triangular relationship.

Abstract

This article deals with Tibetan refugees in India from the first arrivals in 1959, following the Dalai Lama's own flight to India, up to the present day. It focuses on legal issues and on questions pertaining to livelihood possibilities and the preservation of a distinct Tibetan identity in a context of increasingly numerous interactions with Indian society. It first explains how Tibetans managed to establish a strong exile community thanks to the possibilities offered by life in India, such as the constitution of relatively isolated refugee settlements. It then focuses on the challenges faced by Tibetans in India by analysing the tensions between being/remaining a refugee and acknowledging the diasporic status of the Tibetan exile community. It eventually concludes on the more recent trend towards further dispersion, notably to North America. For this, it makes use of the triangular relationship developed by refugee and diaspora scholars, such as Gabriel Sheffer, Bertrand Badie, Steven Vertovec, and Kim Butler, and more specifically of the refugee/diaspora community/host country segment of the triangular relationship.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:08 University Research Priority Programs > Asia and Europe
Dewey Decimal Classification:950 History of Asia
180 Ancient, medieval & eastern philosophy
Uncontrolled Keywords:Peer reviewed
Language:English
Date:2012
Deposited On:12 Dec 2013 08:25
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 17:13
Publisher:Oxford University Press
ISSN:1020-4067
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1093/rsq/hdr016

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