Pakistan’s ethnic African community, known as the Sheedi, can be found in Karachi’s Lyari neighbourhood. The Sheedi are believed to be descendants of sailors who came to Karachi 200 years ago.
Although they form a small group, another indigenous African group is found in Balochistan called the Makrani people. That makes two indigenous African people of Pakistan who came here a century or so ago. The Sheedi in Sindh and the Makrani in Balochistan. Both in the southern region of Pakistan.
"‘While there is this huge celebration of Hindi abroad, in the place of its birth Hindi has been compromised,’ said Mahesh Dhakar. who writes on culture. “Students can hardly write correct Hindi, and their vocabulary is invaded by all kinds of foreign words and internet-supported short forms. Chaste Hindi or Urdu has disappeared,” said Dhakar."
Exactly. It’s infuriating. I taught high school students for a while and one of the most baffling things I experienced was their disregard for Urdu. Talking in Urdu was considered a ‘backward’ pursuit among the majority of O and A Level students that I taught, there was also an element of disdain for matriculation students who were seen as “less posh” and more “paindu” (which is Urdu slang for a villager - again, classist discrimination). But this does not entirely stem from a mentality in a society where English is seen as a definite social marker and refiner for the upper class; It is embedded in a colonial history where English was spoken not only as a language but as a symbol of superiority. The White Master spoke English, the Brown Servant could either learn the language and become slightly better than his peers or he could remain ‘ignorant.’ Later on it became evident that the likelihood of a Pakistani gaining employment in the job market had a lot to do with their ability to speak “good” English.
So today you have schools throughout Asia insisting upon “English medium schools” and brainwashing young people into believing that their native language(s) is something they should not be proud of. The good part about this mania is that quite a few youths are rebelling against Anglophilic pedagogy by actively learning and engaging with others in proper, correct Urdu. Which is amazing and important.
the first South Asian LGBTQ hotline has been launched to help gay South Asians/Desi youths and their families.
This has already been launched on October 11. Please repost widely to the South Asian/Desi community in your area. Dhanyavad.
Announcing the Launch of DeQH!
a Desi lgbtQ Helpline
On National Coming Out Day, Thursday, October 11th, 2012, a coalition of South Asian lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) organizations and individuals in the U.S. will launch DeQH, the first South Asian LGBTQ national helpline.
DeQH offers free, confidential, culturally sensitive peer support, information and resources by telephone for LGBTQ South Asian individuals, families and friends around the globe. The intent is to provide a safe and supportive ear for callers to share their concerns, questions, struggles or hopes through conversations with trained LGBTQ South Asian Peer Support Volunteers.Callers can reach the helpline at (908) FOR-DEQH (908-367-3374) 8pm-10pm on Thursdays and Sundays, Eastern Standard Time [5-7pm PST]. Days and times will expand over time.
DeQH is a collaboration of South Asian LGBTQ groups and individuals around the nation including AQUA North Carolina, Hotpot! in Philadelphia, SALGA NYC, Satrang in LA, and Trikone San Francisco. Please contact us if your group is interested in joining our effort, and/or if you are interested in becoming a general volunteer or would like to be trained as a peer support volunteer.
DeQH operates with support from NQAPIA. Trikone is a fiscal sponsor of DeQH.
Adam Grabowski (misterzumbi) created Lego art inspired by Pakistan.
I love how he gave extra attention to the certain type of art (coins, chains, self-portraits, landscapes, lights and a lot more) we decorate our trucks with in Pakistan. Zabardast!
Sunni protesters in Lahore, Pakistan show their support for the persecuted Shia minority. Urdu sign says: “We severely condemn the murders of our Shia brothers.”
This is a bold, brave statement. Bravo.
ALLAH SAVE THE PUNK! The World’s very FIRST Taqwacores silent mime sketch…
(plz watch the whole thing before you cue your outrage at me… ) feel free to read the hilarious comments on this video … someone accused me of working for the CIA.. lol
High in the Karakoram, the stubborn armies of India and Pakistan have faced off for ninteen years on the Siachen Glacier, the world’s highest battleground and a flash point in the deadly dispute over Kashmir. The view from Sher (lion) post, a high-altitude Pakistani forward position, sits on a mountain ridge above the Chumach Glacier, 19,700 feet above sea level. | Location: Pakistan-occupied Kashmir. August 01, 2002. © Teru Kuwayama
Against the British Empire
afraid-to-run asked: can you please recommend good books to recommend to ignorant english folk about the british empire in all it’s disgusting glory?
Good question. I can speak from the South Asian experience of it; the Subcontinent - present day India, Pakistan, and to an extent Afghanistan. Before getting in the books I’d recommend, you should tell those who support British imperialism that life back then wasn’t as glorious as historians make it look like. With the basics:
- Indian economy was the second largest economy in the world until the British came. During British rule (1857 to 1947) Indian economy grew at zero percent. That India did not grow for 90 years (when Industrial revolution was rewarding Europe and the US) is a tragic outcome of colonial rule’s lack of interest and incompetence. Credit goes to laissez faire capitalism pursued by India after 1992 and American capital market’s confidence and investments in India for India’s emergence as the second fastest growing economy in the world today.
- The subcontinent suffered too many famines during the British rule mostly attributable to mismanagement by the Empire.
- The British Empire encouraged biased stratification in the subcontinental societies based on caste, color and creed. This continues to exist in modern day South Asia where social markers like these control the fates of many.
- Many pro-Empire theorists argue that the British built modern cities with modern conveniences but it should be noted that these were exclusive zones not intended for the “natives” to enjoy.
- There is another popular belief about British rule: ‘The British modernized Indian agriculture by building canals.’ But the actual record reveals a completely different story. “The roads and tanks and canals,” noted an observer in G. Thompson’s “India and the Colonies”, ”which Hindu or Mussulman (Muslim) governments constructed for the service of the nations and the good of the country have been suffered to fall into dilapidation; and now the want of the means of irrigation causes famines.” Montgomery Martin, in his standard work “The Indian Empire”, in 1858, noted that the old East India Company “omitted not only to initiate improvements, but even to keep in repair the old works upon which the revenue depended.” They screwed the natives over again.
- In the early 1800s imports of Indian cotton and silk goods faced duties of 70-80%. British imports faced duties of 2-4%! As a result, British imports of cotton manufactures into India increased by a factor of 50, and Indian exports dropped to one-fourth. A similiar trend was noted in silk goods, woollens, iron, pottery, glassware and paper. As a result, millions of ruined artisans and craftsmen, spinners, weavers, potters, smelters and smiths were rendered jobless and had to become landless agricultural workers. They screwed us over again.
- Reactionary borders.
- And many other reasons why you should logic-slap those who support Empire(s).
The books I would suggest are: M. M. Ahluwalia’s Freedom Struggle in India. Shah, Khambata’s The Wealth and Taxable Capacity of India. G. Emerson’s Voiceless India.Brooks Adams’s The Law of Civilization and Decline. J. R. Seeley’s, Expansion of England. H. H. Wilson, History of British India. D. H Buchanan’s Development of Capitalist Enterprise in India.
Slightly unrelated but you should Gender and Community Under British Colonialism: Emotion, Struggle and Politics in a Chinese Village by Siu Keung Cheung as well. Hope this helps.
Urdustan is now out, available for $9.00 in PRINT only. It is a collection of short stories about South Asians—punks, vampires, deafies, etc. There are seven stories in total. Please visit Urdustan for a summary and a short review by Jean-Marc, a musician based in Brussels, Belgium (the world’s very FIRST review of Urdustan).
Seven stories, four nations, one people.
Whether it’s a slaughterhouse in the East End of London or a run-down hotel in the holy city of Al-Madinah, a tiny township in Northern Michigan or a fishing village on the Bay of Bengal in India, people yearn for the same thing in common–life–to experience life and to feel alive.
Urdustan tells the stories of North Indians and Pakistanis; Muslims and Hindus; Desi Americans and British Asians. All come from the same land yet each leads a different life and tells a different story; each shares the desire to experience love and friendship, the insatiable urge to connect to others on a human level.
Urdustan reveals multiple personalities of the South Asian diaspora that are often ignored. The stories are richly interwoven with different characters from many walks of life–Hasidic Jews, African Americans, punks, deaf teens, gay males, and even supernatural creatures such as vampires and angels. Romance, horror, racism, homophobia, audism, love, death, spirituality, fantasy, friendship all play important factors in the storytelling of Urdustan. Each story is a small reflection of the greatly diverse world we live in and call our home.
# REPPIN D.I.Y SELF-PUBLISHED DESI / DEAF / MUSLIM / PUNK AUTHORS