Crossing Borders, Present Futures: A Study of the Life Histories of Pakistani Immigrants in Durban

  • Sasha Rai


In exploring the life histories of the three first-generation Pakistani migrants from Durban, KwaZulu Natal, this chapter seeks to contribute to the burgeoning study of the Pakistani diasporic community, which is one of the largest in the world and within which limited research is being done. I will then attempt to frame this study within the larger South Asian and globalised transnational communities by interrogating some of the ways in which current academia engages with the dialogue of diaspora and how this affects identity formation and community development by looking at South Asian diaspora as a whole as well as how transnationalism results in a “double consciousness.” Individual issues such as reasons for migration, religion, culture, caste and how the lived experiences of the interviewees have changed since they have migrated to Durban will also be analysed and then framed within the larger diasporic narrative. This chapter will also examine the methodological concerns which surround the use of oral history as an analytical tool for constructing historical narratives and how these concerns have shaped my role and experiences as an interviewer.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Sasha Rai
    • 1
  1. 1.University of KwaZulu-NatalDurbanSouth Africa

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