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Integration and ‘Limited Acculturation’ of Tibetans at Shimla: Experience and Perceptions of a Diaspora

  • Vibha Arora
  • Renuka Thapliyal
Chapter

Abstract

The Tibetan community is an important part of the economy and cultural tourism of contemporary Himachal Pradesh. How do we understand the social development of the Tibetan diaspora that has been born in India and has only heard about Tibet? How have they transformed the cultural space of Shimla city and contributed to its economy? Our research questions interconnect theoretical literature with a small questionnaire survey administered in 2008 to Tibetans residing in Shimla city and some interviews conducted in 2011. Based on an analysis of this data, we explain how the Tibetan diaspora maintains its identity, perpetuating their culture, and significantly impacts part of the economy of Shimla City of Himachal Pradesh. The context of forced exile, belonging for their homeland, and gradual acculturation of youth bring forth numerous issues for discussion and further study on social development of this community. Our chapter forwards debates on commercialization of culture and cultural hybridity with Tibetans born in India increasingly interlacing elements of their host country with the culture practised by their elders.

Keywords

Ethnic Identity Host Community Indian Government Tibetan Autonomous Region Identity Negotiation 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Springer India 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Humanities and Social SciencesIndian Institute of Technology DelhiDelhiIndia

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