Representations of Indian Diasporic Identity in 'Bollywood/Hollywood' and 'American Desi'
Seminar paper from the year 2007 in the subject American Studies - Culture and Applied Geography, grade: 1,7, University of Rostock (Institut für Anglistik/Amerikanistik), course: HS Representations of Diasporic Identities in Film and Film Music: The Example of India, 9 entries in the bibliography, language: English, abstract: This paper is trying to 'locate the East and the West in the same person', that is, in the protagonists of two recent films: American Desi and Bollywood/Hollywood. Both were directed by NRIs (Non-Resident Indians) and are set within the Indian Diaspora of North America. Bollywood/Hollywood is a romantic comedy/parody set in Toronto, Canada, while American Desi is a college comedy set among the Indian students of a typical American college. Both films deal comically with the difficulties that arise from living in two worlds, adapting to two different sets of values and the question of identity. First, this paper is going to lay the groundwork by defining what is meant by diasporic identity, supplying some background information on the Indian communities of Canada and the USA and giving a short synopsis for both of the films. The next chapter discusses how certain themes of Indianness, e.g. family, religion and pop culture, are depicted in the films. Then, the - assumed - diasporic identities of the main protagonists are described. Finally, the conclusion will not only summarize the findings, but also try to find parallels between the films and their characters, as well as differences that might be connected with one stemming from Canada and one from the USA.
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