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This is despite the fact that many migrants from India may have entitle- ment to ancestral land. In contrast, the Pakistani government has always recognized dual citizenship and, as such, the Pakistani diaspora has a much closer and intimate economic and political connection with Pakistan.

This example reflects how state structures and legal frameworks can restrict, enable or create certain diasporic effects and activities.

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Another aspect of homeland in diaspora studies that we need to address is the supposed unchanging nature of the homeland. Before , for example, there was only an Ethiopian diaspora, but since then there is now another independent state called Eritrea. In the post-war migration to Britain from South Asia, up to there was only a Pakistani and Indian diaspora. After the struggle for independence, a third country, Bangladesh, came into formation and thus a new diaspora formed. Strictly speaking, both the Eritrean and Bangladeshi diasporas were not constituted through migration, exile, trade or any of the other reasons previously given, but nominally arose due to the creation of new nations.

The instability of ideas of home and abroad can be partially attributed to the commercially driven increased use of information communication tech- nologies ICTs and the decreasing costs of travel, which have enabled the movement of people, information and goods to take place in greater volume. Developing interconnectivity across international borders has meant that those with access are now able, to various extents, to maintain connections, deepen relationships and broaden networks with lesser investment in terms of time, cost and effort.

Though the question of infrastructure remains cen- tral to the enhanced use of technologies of communication, and there remains many that are excluded from the transnational ecumene, there is no doubt that extended diasporic connections have arisen as ICTs have become more ubiquitous. This is not to say that it is ICTs that have some- how created diasporas in the sense of virtual communities on the internet, but rather the combination of cheaper travel and greater ease of communi- cation has supported what was already present see Kaur and Hutnyk However, the impact of ICTs repeats the old story of the centrality of the nation-state in diaspora studies.

It is the use of new technology, with its ability to transcend state borders, which is highlighted.

Gustave Flaubert

This is indeed a hangover of the exile thesis, in which context there are barricades to return or limits on maintaining transnational links. Movements from village to city and upward mobility from working to middle class also evoke some of the temperaments of diaspora. But this does not necessarily mean that the Nariobi-ite has had to question affiliation with the village in quite the same way as his London cousins may do.

Questions of racism, loyalty to the nation and belonging all become per- tinent in transnational migration, questions which have their counterpart in rural—urban migration but do not always carry quite the same urgency or the same threat although it can be urgent and threatening in different ways, of course. Political connections The problem that nation-states have with diasporas has to do with the ideal of loyalty. In the modern era, the nation-state is supposed to be the princi- pal body of affiliation for all those who live within its borders.

This is the manner in which the nation can then represent the interests of those it claims to represent. Diasporas complicate this easy formulation.


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In , Norman Tebbit summed up this problem by asking who British Asians would support in a cricket match, England or a South Asian team. Similar critiques of the masculinist nature of the affilia- tion to the nation have been made by feminists see Anthias and Yuval- Davis ; Chatterjee But the diasporic context has a special significance here because the loyalties in question are concerned with other nation-states.

In this sense, unlike Marxist and feminist critiques, diasporic questioning often remains within the domain of nation-states. Yet, crucially, it is the fact that it is those residing in one place but influencing another that becomes problematic. However, the activities of these groups in influencing their homelands do not necessarily follow a progressive or even transgres- sive set of political aims.

According to Yossi Shain , the impact of the American-Jewish diaspora on the politics of Israel has been to promote a peaceful solution.


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This example reminds us that despite the activities of diasporas, inter-state relations tend to work towards mutual maintenance rather than criticism. The role of diasporas in homeland politics becomes all the more appar- ent when there is conflict at play. Often these conflicts become more prominent when large diasporas are involved. The successful struggles of the Eritrean people for nationhood received scant attention in the Western media when compared to those groups who had diasporic connections. The list that Arjun Appadurai often reels off in his various commentaries include the Kurds, Sikhs, Tamils and Kashmiris — groups that all have a sig- nificant presence in Euro-America and therefore with relative ease of access to media and those deemed powerful in the New World Order.

Yet, this process is not that new: the Irish in America have long been both mate- rial and ideological supporters of the Irish Republican Army see Chapter 6. We have already twice noted the Jewish case. Anthias illustrates how Cypriots abroad differ according to whether they are Greek or Turkish in terms of their preferred political solution to the question of Cyprus. Yet, in all of these cases it is premature to dismiss the role of the nation-state. The influence and impact that a diaspora can have at the level of realpolitik depends largely on the structures of the particular nation-state in question.

Ostergaard-Nielson shows the lack of success that Turkish and Kurdish groups have when lobbying the German and Dutch parliaments. In contrast, Yossi Shain demonstrates how Northern Ireland, Cyprus and Israel are all kept high on the political agenda in the USA through well-organized lobbies led by diasporic groups. The American polit- ical culture is premised on various vote-banks which are incorporated into the lobbying system as a vehicle for expressing state agendas. What becomes evident from this comparative work is the sustained role of the nation-state in framing and enabling the political activities of diasporic groups, even where this is to have a transnational impact.

Attempting to balance the role of the nation-state, the organization of a diaspora and the roots of an ethno-national conflict calls for analysis of some depth, which many accounts often fail to develop. For example, the Sikh secessionist movement calling for a Khalistan was heavily supported by and influenced by the diaspora in the UK and Canada see Tatla Yet, the reasons for this large participation cannot be solely reduced to expressions of sympathy directed against the actions of the Indian state in the Punjab. To name such sympathies as deterritorialized ethnicity is a reduction that does not account for the fact that separate processes can produce a similar outcome.

The ideological revivalism that was associated with the Sikh secessionist move- ment resonated with settler-migrant concerns. At the same time, the impact of capitalism on rural livelihoods led to similar questions about Sikh identity in the Punjab. These separate processes came together due to an ongoing dialogue in a diasporic space, the significance of which led the Indian gov- ernment to accuse the diaspora of causing all the problems in the Punjab — a useful way of avoiding their own culpability.

Perhaps an even more extreme example can be found among those engaged in the struggle for an independent Kashmiri state in the north of India and Pakistan. One of the main organizations engaged in political activism in the region found its origins in Birmingham, UK, in the newly forming diaspora.

This organization then later worked in Pakistan-administered Kashmir before crossing the border into Indian-administered Kashmir to become one of the main secu- lar organizations fighting for liberation. Yet, the circulation of ideas and people that fostered this struggle has remained a closed case to the plethora of books written about the Kashmir situation.

It is perhaps because dias- poric analysis is too difficult to carry out in a context where international relations are still determined by inter-state concerns and diasporic involve- ment is seen as illegitimate or an unwelcome interference. The Sikhs and Kurds are not looking for a new way to live with difference. Rather, they are concerned with gaining their own nation-state. In an era where many argue that the nation-state is no longer all that relevant see Held et al.

This desire for nationhood among certain diasporas poses some problems for those theorists who have argued an anti-national line, and all the more so for those who at least have highlighted the tension that exists between notions of diaspora and the nation-state. Once again, there are historical antecedents to the role of diasporas in political formations. The first Pan-African Congress took place in Paris in and the largest of these events was held in Manchester in The international struggle against colonialism and imperialism never respected extant nation-state borders.

diaspora / situations - kai (extract #1)

The Ghadar movement was a revolutionary movement of the s in India with the aim of overthrowing British imperialism. Many of its members were exiled to North America where they continued their work of anti-imperialist struggle, finding a receptive American public, which had rid itself of the British in the late eighteenth century as a result of the Revolutionary War.

As previously discussed, the notion of migration contains with it the idea of transfer of people from one place to another. However, the flows in the other direction come in two forms: these are as remittances and as investment in productive capacity, that is, businesses. These forms of flow can be illustrated by com- paring the Indian and Chinese diasporas. According to Devesh Kapur: The ratio of foreign investment [in China] by the Chinese diaspora is nearly twenty-fold that of the Indian diaspora [investment in India].

Kapur The difference here may be due to the relative size of an established entre- preneurial class among the Chinese diaspora and the large proportion of rural migrants among Indians although this is now changing due to newer migration to the USA.

Manual Blighted Star (Diaspora Book 1)

In either case, we are still talking about substantial amounts of money which have a considerable impact on the receiving economies. This recent courting of diasporas by governments of the South has arisen because of their need to capture large flows of capital which can have a positive, if not major impact upon economic development.

Rather, the impact of remittances is localized to those areas of mass migra- tion. For instance, certain parts of Mexico Gutierrez and parts of Pakistan Kalra have benefited greatly from remittances, but this phenomenon has not been widespread or even. In the case of the invest- ment from overseas Chinese, only certain provinces in China, such as Guandong and Fujian, have benefited Weidenbaum and Hughes This is another example of the discrepancy between nation-states which have particular plans for their diasporas and the groups themselves, who may pursue very different agendas.

The investment patterns of diasporic populations may not concur with national agendas of development but they do resonate with the current phase of global capitalism, which creates uneven regions within nation- states as well as between them. Indeed, diasporic capital organization seems to fit into another trend of the new logic of advanced capitalist organization, that which favours small-scale networks over large, vertically-integrated forms of production see Castells Large organizations are seen as unresponsive to the requirements of contemporary consumers, who want more individually tailored and customized products.

The supposed rapidly changing nature of the market place can therefore benefit from networks of small producers who can respond quickly to market change and at the same time can harbour specialist knowledge. In this way, the flexibility and diverse capabilities of smaller companies are maintained while the market- ing and sales muscle of the co-ordinating firm makes for a mutually bene- ficial relationship. While this ideal of the networking firm is closely bound up with the ideology of neo-liberalism, it is not too difficult to see how diasporas, with their links across nations, can be seen as tools for the facili- tation of economic growth.

Kapur persuasively argues that diaspo- ras are able to provide both local knowledge and credibility when firms wish to expand from the West into the developing world. This is particu- larly the case with the penetration of large information technology IT companies such as Microsoft and Hewlett Packard into India. Diaspora emerges, then, as it becomes useful to the market, or to the new logic of global finance capital. She will be helpful in the emerging South Asian market precisely because she is a well-placed Southern diasporic. This shift in scholarly atten- tion still tells us little of the economic activities of the majority of diasporic groups, who are the service sector workers of the developing world and the Third World in the First.

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Ranging from Latino agricultural labour in California to Nigerian peddlers in Athens, Tamil flower sellers in Frankfurt and Bengali waiters in London, these groups constitute a seemingly endless list where each example evokes a different set of economic ties. Perhaps even more than the hi-tech diasporics, this service sector labour also fur- nishes the essential requirements of contemporary globalizing capital.

The service sector dias- porics were never counted as part of a brain-drain and are still not courted to any extent by their host governments. Yet these groups also play a transnational economic role, though this is more to do with protecting their families from the ravages of International Monetary Fund structural reform programmes in their homeland countries, and avoiding the harsh realities of life in those states that have, in a neo-liberal global agenda, abandoned all attempts at universal social development see Amin Thus, diasporic connections provide various new means for the mobi- lization of people and capital, and new insights into the ways in which social organizations can transcend nation-state boundaries.

But do these new methods necessarily form a challenge to the current neo-liberal global order? Or, evaluating the views canvassed in this section, does the emer- gence of an interest in diaspora coincide with a particular phase of capital- ist development? Is diaspora another tool for market penetration or a potential method for political network-building?

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Faculty and Staff

Are these questions ask- ing too much of the diaspora concept when maybe we should be content with the critique it offers to homogeneity and essentialism? The relationship between forms of exclusion, and indeed differentiated inclusion, and the emergence of diasporic solidarity and political projects of identity, on the one hand, and dialogue as in hybridisation , on the other, are important foci for research.

Anthias Indeed, Anthias makes the significant point that a singular concern with diaspora can divert attention away from racialized social relations in any particular context. Clifford is mimicking and depoliticizing a slogan that was used to assert the rights of racialized groups in Britain to equal treat- ment and value. In a previous section of this chapter, where we compared diaspora with immigration and ethnicity, we noted how a positive aspect of diaspora was its ability to present a more nuanced understanding of migra- tion, but this may be to the neglect of local particularities and political reali- ties.