Quiting India: the Anglo-Indian Culture of Migration

Robyn Andrews


In my work with the Anglo-Indians in Calcutta I was reminded of Caplan's (1995) comment that Anglo-Indians had a 'culture of emigration', as I observed a steady stream of Anglo-Indians leaving India. Even though destination opportunities are being eroded, the Anglo-Indians I spoke with regularly referred to relatives living abroad, and in the main wanted to emulate this pattern of migration.
In this paper I draw particularly on case study material collected in India and Australia over the past five years. I explore the nexus between Anglo-Indian identity, which they often regarded as more Western than Indian, and their migration patterns. Concentrating on their reasons for leaving, I contribute to the 'culture of migration' literature through this analysis of the migration culture of an ethnic group which exhibits variations on the set of reasonably distinct characteristics associated with groups having a 'culture of migration'.


migration, India, Australia, Anglo-Indian diaspora

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.11157/sites-vol4iss2id73