One hardly hears the hyphenated identity African-Indians, but the BBC website has this picture gallery with some interesting tidbits. [hat tip Mirax]
The African-Indians are called Sidis. One of the strongest remaining links they have to their roots is the damaal or drum. Otherwise Sidi culture is not significantly different to that of other poor, rural Indians
Like most Sidis, the people of Jambur are Sufi Muslims, who believe God is worshipped through song and dance. Anthropologists believe the dancers’ ecstatic performances are a combination of traditional African worship and Indian Sufi practices.
That India is incredibly diverse goes without saying. Is it tolerant? I think people are willing to live and let live but there is much less intermingling, which has much to do with caste stratification and little geographic mobility. But there is less fear of the unknown, I would venture, because people are used to difference in belief and lifestyle. Anyway. Long live multiple identities!
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Filed in: Culture,India