The borders that divide, the borders that unite: (Re)interpreting Garo Processes of identification in India and Bangladesh

E.W. Bal, T. Claquin-Chambugong

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Abstract

The people known as Garos, from the Garo Hills and adjacent (lowland) areas in India and Bangladesh, have never constituted one unified and self-defined in-group, although British colonial rule indeed produced a feeble notion of an imagined Garo community. Hence, the international border of 1947 formalized certain distinctions between hill Garos and lowlanders that had existed much longer, and gave a further impetus to the articulations of ethnic identities in different spaces. In recent years, however, we do see different attempts by the Garos to establish linkages across the border. This paper examines these processes of disconnection, exemplified by and through the international border, of unification (within the nation-state), and of (re)connection (across the border). We also try to show how the different strategies of the Indian and Pakistani/Bangladeshi states, in dealing with the populations in their borderlands, have impacted local processes of self-identification and self-assertion in significantly different ways, but with similar outcomes. © 2014 © 2014 Association for Borderlands Studies.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)95-109
JournalJournal of Borderlands Studies
Volume29
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2014

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Bangladesh
India
ethnic identity
nation state
community
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border

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The borders that divide, the borders that unite: (Re)interpreting Garo Processes of identification in India and Bangladesh. / Bal, E.W.; Claquin-Chambugong, T.

In: Journal of Borderlands Studies, Vol. 29, No. 1, 2014, p. 95-109.

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review

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