HomeBlogsAerogram: Should South Asians Stop Calling Themselves Desi?

Aerogram: Should South Asians Stop Calling Themselves Desi?

South Asian American

The term “desi” has long been used in the South Asian American community to refer to each other. It has most always been used in a positive sense as an expression of ethnic pride.

But communities change as they grow.  South Asian Americans have certainly advanced light years in the last decade both in population and political power in the United States.

A blog on Aerogram by Rohin Guha suggests its time to move on and stop calling each other desi.

That certainly would not be without precedent. Asian Americans  long ago stop calling themselves oriental. African Americans no longer refer to themselves as negro.

Guha writes:

”Desi” doesn’t even begin to sum up the richness of South Asian cultures — nor does it scratch at the surface for men and women who are forging new identities in lands and communities that don’t have a pre-existing concept of their identities. As a slang term for people from the Indian subcontinent, it’s conveniently reductive, at best.

You can read her blog in its entirety on  Aerogram.



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