Sunday, 9 January 2011

Facing the music..

Fate, it seems, has a sense of irony.

As the turn of events would have it, I am now smack in the middle of an area which is inhabited by my people, a people I inherited by virtue of birth to an ethnic group.  Now this definition of my people needs some deliberation. Is birth into an ethnicity the sole marker of a communal identity ? Is communal identity really so simple ?

Over the years, I have always realised, that I share more identity-traits ( for lack of a better word) with people who are supposedly not my people, people with whom I only share a long forgotten recessive gene, a tiny iota of my genetic history. This sense of belonging, has naturally over the course of time, gravitated me towards certain choices; each choice, in turn, building up my identity bit by bit.
This has of course, weakened my connection to the people who I am supposed to belong to. In fact, in a strange twisted way, I feel more of an alien among them. And, without eschewing any words, I can say, quite a lot of them have only reinforced this sense of alienation.

So far, I had consciously avoided staying in an area demographically dominated by my people. It is easy to be an alien among aliens, the identity clash is less in-your-face. But, as fate would have it, now I have no choice but to face the music.

It's time to face a crowd that keep reminding you that you do not belong among  your people.


  1. CR Park regrets, already?

    I've shtayed in much better coloniesh.

  2. interesting....i got a point of view..which is....its not the people , but the region/locality/ geography one is in...a case in point....recently i visited andaman & nicobar islands, on many of which bengali settlers (refugees coming from bangladesh after parition, just like the one in CR PARK) had been settled long time back.....
    however, with the only exception of language, they do not have the characteristics of the native bengali population or to put it rightly the mainland WB!!
    they have developed their unique culture which is an amalgamation of their geography and history(both of bangladesh and A&N)...
    so...for your situation..i would just say...change your geography, if u dont wanna face the music!!!!

  3. @ rozhie
    no regrets...i love the food here.

    @shooting star
    changing the location would simply mean running away...which is quite unacceptable. avoiding a conflict and running away from it are two entirely different responses. while the former, is okay with me in some cases, the latter never is.
    anyway, this post has less to do with the people here and more to do with my internal conflicts.

    unfortunately, as i feared it would be, the post has been read as it was not intended to be. but as an aside, allow me to say that your analysis is quite fact, within the mainland also, geography plays a large part in determining the communal identity. while most bengalis from the southern districts, speak only their native tongues, it is not uncommon for those in the north to speak nepali/ ahomiya equally fluently.
    in fact, i am more at peace with people who are less "hardcore" mainland culture. unfortunately though, many a times, and entirely unrelated to the diaspora you seek to advocate, it is seen that the diaspora develops a fanaticism towards the so called archetype culture of the mainland, perhaps in an effort to reconnect.