File spoon-archives/seminar-13.archive/south-asian-women_1995-1996/seminar-13.nov95-mar96, message 84

Date: Fri, 02 Feb 1996 11:43:08 -0400 (EDT)
Subject: acculturation
To: South Asian net <seminar-13-AT-jefferson.village.Virginia.EDU>

First let me thank Radhika for all her encouragement to post.  If it 
weren't for assurances, I would probably still scrambling at my 
computer.  I will continue to do this just after this post.  Nonetheless, 
this is a much more interactive way to sort through ideas and actually 
"dialogue" alongside people who have similar preocupations.  I digress.

Also, to Dhooleka - thank you for your very insightful thoughts on 
acculturation.  In fact, I found this approach mirroring what I want ot 
say eventually, and what (I think) Himani says through her poetry - even 
moreso in her critical work.  

Acculturation (the term/word) does DE-historicize - it places the 
emphasis more on a kind of "exchange" between "ethnics" and dominant 
culture that is not at all neutral.  The model that I am looking at 
(which I referred in an earlier post, by Enoch Padolsky) divides 
acculturation "options" into 4 categories:  Integration, 
Marginalization,  Segregation, and Assimilation.  Yes, he notes stages in 
between and takes into account grey(er) areas, and the limitations of this 
work, but it is still a model applied to "ethnic minority literatures."  
If you can find this model, it would be really interesting to note your 
reaction to it with respect to work done on acculturation and the 
realities of living and loving in a different culture.  

I would like to introduce a piece of Himani's work.  I will simply write 
some lines and leave it open to what it says to you.  If you can relate 
it to "acculturation", even better.  I will log on after a while to see 
whats been said and give you my thoughts.  

Here goes:
"doing time"
.... They are fully un-covered.  All
the bricks, helicopters, dogs and Wallstreet Journals are
there for us to see.  If we who are not white, and also
women, have not yet seen that here we live in a prison,
that we are doing time, then we are fools, playing
unenjoyable games with ourselves.  I won't go so far,
however, as to say that we deserve what we get.

That's all I am going to give you for now - If it is not enough, I can 
write more.  I thought this might stir some thoughts.  

Looking forward to your thoughts.


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