Difference and Marginalisation in Ramabai Espinet’s The Swinging Bridge

Author:   Sandip Rambhau Gawai
Publisher:   GRFDT
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This study aims to interrogate the difference and marginalisation in Indian diaspora through an Indo-CaribbeanCanadian writer Ramabai Espinet’s novel The Swinging Bridge. It will largely focus on various issues of Indian immigrants in Caribbean. Indian Diaspora is a largest diaspora with differences/diversities prevalently found in every corner of the world. The lives of immigrants are haunted by the memory of past and their current situation in diasporic space. Difference based inequalities such as gender, cultural, ethnic, caste or race and even nationals of the particular country are big issues in Indian diaspora from the beginning of migration and settlement from country of origin to country residence. Ramabai Espinet as a member of Indian diaspora in Caribbean has focused on issues faced by Indian immigrants and particularly women in new land through her novel The Singing Bridge and shown that the history of marginalisation, oppression, exploitation of women in diasporic space and their current scenario as secondary migrants. She has also examined the double diaspora experiences of Indian immigrants from India to Caribbean and Caribbean to Canada in her novel. This study will try to interrogate the various issues of difference and marginalisation of Indian immigrants in new space and their histories of exploitation and oppression by indigenous population and even Indian immigrants mindsets toward their own community members and domestic violence among Indian families in diaspora. Ramabai Espinet’s novel The Swinging Bridge portrayed violent experiences of Indian immigrant women in Caribbean and Canada such as sexual oppression, marginalisation, domestic violence, and Indian cultural practices through her characters as representative of Indian diasporic communities. The various issues of Indian immigrants with the large focus on women issues in diasporic space critically analysed in this paper.

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