Essay about The Identity Of Canadian Culture

1738 Words Dec 11th, 2016 7 Pages
When I ask my grandfather what nationality he identifies with, his response is always Kenyan-Goan, instead of Canadian. Yet, he chose Canada as the place to bring his family. Canada is still young compared to the rest of the world, and in this sense lacks cultural definition. Like people, places have their own distinct identities as well, and Canada’s identity is rooted in being a place for those who lack place. Which happens to be the case for my Goan ancestors, their identity is characterized by their history of placelessness. Through a framework of colonial conquests and the decolonizing movements that followed, the Goans have become a migratory peoples lacking a connection to a concrete geographical place, pulled through the colonies by political and economic developments and setbacks. As someone who identifies as both Kenyan-Goan and Canadian, I situate myself in the two geographical identities and discover that the two belong to one another: Canada opens its doors to the placeless migrants, giving the Goans a sense of belonging while respecting their cultural history, as a childless mother accepts a motherless orphan. Goa is a small settlement on the western shore of the subcontinent of India. It was settled by the Portuguese making it a Catholic community, separating it from neighbouring Hindu and Muslim communities (Newman, 1984; 429). By virtue of their Catholicism, Goans came to be trusted by the British empire upon the arrival of the British in India in the late…

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