Friday, August 15, 2008

Cultural Ambassadors

Indians in foreign countries become cultural ambassadors of their country per se. So if an Indian does something weird, then it is assumed that "all Indians" do that and its an Indian cultural thing. Its funny how things get generalized to Indians. Some of the funniest assumptions about Indians that I have come across are:

  1. Indians are vegetarians - If I take the ratio of number of veggie to non-veggie Indians I know it will be 1:8 (remember, statistics are always made up on the spot)
  2. Indians are non-alcoholics - The less said the better
  3. Indians are aggressive - Look at me, am so naive and laid back
  4. Indians are good at math - Err.. am I really Indian?
  5. Indians are poor - Go check the Forbes list of richest people in 2008 we have 47 billionaires too :)

If you come to think of it .. not all of us eat the same food, speak the same language, follow the same religion or have the same festivals. Not all of us are dark/fair, short/tall, fat/lean, rich/poor, funny or crazy.

I think its time we tell the world that our languages, cultures, traditions, food habits and everything else is absolutely diverse, and there is nothing in common between two randomly chosen Indians out of a population of 1.13 billion, other than the passport of course :) !!


  1. Very well said, Girish.

    But who is 'We'? It's us only. I remember someone asking me with assumption about the norm of India in some matter and I clarified that it is not So! YES, we only have to change it.

    And Also, Let me say that it's not only with Indians.. We tend to generalize people ~ like Chinese or American.. etc.

    Again! To drill down further - We generalize within our country too yaar! Gujjus do this, Telugus do that, Marathis are like that.. & UP ppl are like that.. etc.. Don't we!?

    In a Large sense, the mentality has to change! Not a small task though!

    to sum up, I am with your point!

  2. hey hey i like ur blog very much...

    u got another fan now :P

    And yes u inspired me to continue writing my own blog and to write it in English.

  3. I still believe in my 3 Indian types: the control group, the beyond expectations group, and the are-they-really-indians group. =p