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Michigan Daily: Calculating How Indian I Am

University of MichiganA blog post inspired by a recent conversation about Indian identity raises some interesting questions,

In the post in the Michigan Daily, Tanya Madhani recounts when a White girl commented, “You’re not even like really Indian.”

Tanya remembers looking confused and the student explaining further.

“Well, I mean like you’re not really ‘Indian Indian.’

Tanya thought about it some more as if she was calculating her Indianess in her head the way she would a calculus equation.  She wasn’t involved in dance like other Indian Americans on campus. She didn’t associate exclusively with other desis.

I remember back in my high school days when I would loosely throw the term banana around  about other students I considered weren’t Asian enough. Decades later, some of those “bananas” are active in the Asian American community giving back and helping those in need.

So Tanya has a point. Before you question anyone’s identity, you might want to think about it a little more because no one has to prove anything to anyone.

Agree or disagree?





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