Friday, March 31, 2023
Niz Goenkar
Latest News

Is GEM Culture The Victim Of Academic Baloney? – By Philomena & Gilbert Lawrence
Tuesday - Dec 20, 2022
Culture is defined as a set of rules for normal human conduct in any given set of circumstances and the behavior members of that group can expect from others. Broadly, culture encompasses customs, norms, beliefs, values, knowledge, folkways, mores, and skills that guide a people’s behavior along shared pathways (Ralph Linton in The Study of Man 1947). Culture’s role in determining human comportment is the equivalent of instincts guiding animal behavior. Cultural practices have developed and been refined over eons of years; their most important function is to protect the individual and society not only in the good times but under adverse circumstances, too. For example, sociologists claim that beliefs in ancestral ghosts were more potent in enforcing cultural practices, rules, regulations, and the law than the justice system and the police.
Part I: GEM’s (Goan, East-Indian, Mangalorean) Colonial Culture
Lusocentric and Indocentric outlook:
There are two rival academic discourses on GEM’s colonial culture. Writers (foreign and Indian) on Overseas Territories (OT) in Lusitania’s Eastern empire are classified as Lusocentric authors, who glorify colonial imperialism and exaggerate the positive colonial impact on the natives’ ethos, which formed part of the individual’s religion and cultural practices (Perez, Collis, Axelrod, and Fuerch). These authors were generally Lusitanian and wrote during the early period of colonialism; their stance was similar to that held by the “Rudyard Kiplings” of the Iberian world who justified   colonialism. Kipling’s concept of civilization focused on “White Supremacy,” in keeping with the thinking of that era. Some Lusophilic authors today pen fictional nostalgic novels with the backdrop of 450 years of colonialism or as part of the Portuguese empire or paterfamilias. Occasionally, these texts may adopt the façade of a paper like “Lusotropic, Lusophonic, Lusophilic” published in the Portuguese Colonial Empire.
Indocentric authors with an anti-Lusitania perspective demonized colonial imperialism and exaggerated its negative impact on the natives’ cultural practices (C. Ifeka, P.P. Shirodkar, Tristão de Bragança Cunha, P. D. Gaitonde, T.R. deSouza, L.A. Correia, K. Farias, and S.K. Sharma). Many, though not all, of these authors penned their writings as part of their freedom struggle efforts. To these publications, one can add the writings of Dutch and British authors, whose description of   Iberian colonialism can generally be included in the “Black Legend - Leyenda Negra” category. When these authors run out of anti-Lusitania material, they invariably refer to The Inquisition to spice up their writings. British and Lusitanian tourists -- including Claudius Buchanan and Richard Burton -- who spent a few months visiting Goa during the colonial period, are often considered “authorities” on events in Goa.   Their skill lay more in writing about Goa than in thoroughly researching the topic. Modern day scholars have developed a knack for repeating these findings based on a ready-made source of references. Recently, documents pertaining to the Spanish Inquisition were made available to scholars, and reviews of the material confirm that the stories were exaggerated. Case in point: Capital punishments handed out during the auto-de-fe accounted for one percent of those prosecuted. Alan Machado, who diligently researched the entire inquisition period in Goa, documents similar findings. His recently released book, (Goa’s Inquisition: facts, fiction, factoids) is a must-read for all GEMs and other history buffs who are interested in this topic.
PP Shirodkar and TB Cunha, who are often quoted, bitterly complained about the loss of Goan culture and attributed it to "Colonization and Conversion."   However, this unfounded blame was all part of their agenda and struggle to end colonialism. Any unbiased observer will testify that Goans (Hindus and Catholics) in Goa and in the Diasporas successfully preserved their culture, including the joint-family system, until 1961. After that period, GEMs have noticeably lost regard for their heritage, even without colonization, conversion, and efforts to denationalize. More Brahmins eat meat (including hamburgers) NOW than during the colonial period, without any threat of Inquisition-related pressure. Indocentric perspectives, which tend to be anti-Portuguese and anti-Christian, confuse events which occurred during the periods of colonial land-grabs, wars during the early phases of colonization, as well as the continuing conflicts with Bijapur in the 16th century with the relative peacetime colonial rule of the 17th-20th centuries. As Machado stated, this period was not entirely peaceful, and the Inquisition was mainly active during periods of external conflicts. In the opinions of Indocentric authors -- including one who asked the question: “Is there one Goan Identity, Several or None?” -- The colonizer decimated the native culture.
According to the two opposing opinions, the colonizer’s impact (positive or negative) is overstated. Each is described in extreme terms and anecdotes to highlight the authors’ perspective and advance their agenda. Charles Boxer, a London-based Professor of History at King's College, London, reports on the “repressive and obscurantist rule of the Portuguese, aided and abetted by its historic alliance with Britain.” Malyn Newitt states, “Christianization was a cause of erosion of Indian cultural value in the natives.” The two rival discourses have been described as “class-based ideologies.” This dichotomy in outlook is likely because both groups use a broad brush to describe the entire 451 years of colonialism or for a minimum, a century of it. Both groups do not differentiate between periods when there was turmoil (when the viability of the colony was at stake) and during periods of stability. To explain the issue using more recent history, the British government’s policies and that country’s civilian society’s behaviour during World War II were   markedly different from before the war.   Similarly, the federal policies of the United States and the attitude of its citizens post 9/11/2001 changed dramatically after the twin-tower bombings.
Both Indocentric and Lusocentric authors use hyperbolic assumptions to convert opinion into facts. The two groups assume that pre-Portuguese Goa was a land of peaceful farming and fishing villages, which it was not, given the frequent battles between Bijapur and Hampi over Goa and its access to cavalry horses during the 15th century. Furthermore, historians and other academics document the actions of the rulers and the politically powerful but often ignore the history and inventiveness of the hard-working natives. Papers like SK Sharma’s, “Revisiting Portuguese Colonization in India” beg the question: Has the topic of GEM culture become the victim of ivory-tower academic baloney? Sadly, authors today can elect to be Indophile or Lusophile (depending on their audience) and have an impressive list of historical references to back their opinion; both views are wrong and both attitudes do socio-economic injustice to today’s GEMs -- Hindu and Christian alike.
For today’s scholars to wallow in the mindsets of the obsessive Lusocentric and Indocentric thinkers such as TB Cunha, PP Shirodkar, E Jorge, albeit revered in their period are doing a disservice to the present generation of educated GEMs and Indians in India and in the diaspora. The goals of cultural nationalism for these individuals are economic success and technological prowess across national boundaries. Now that Goans and Indians are well into the post-colonial phase of history, and living in a world that believes in separation of faith and state, any discussion and recommendations on mixing nationality and religion is taking our society backwards, instead of advancing it into the 21st century.
The works of well-known Indian fiction writers, who negatively stereotype GEM names and characters in their novels, are echoed and amplified by the Bollywood movie industry, which generally portrays GEMs in India in a less-than-exemplary light. The pejorative distortions and negative serotyping of GEM culture in today’s extremist political clime is hostile and socio-economically harmful, if not physically dangerous to GEMs in India. In addition to this negative ambience, the tourist departments at the state and national levels promote Goa as a place for easy living and fun, precisely touting the state’s Indo-Iberian lifestyle and ambience. Unfortunately, these distortions today are exploited by fundamentalists and religious extremists to malign and intimidate GEMs, who are a small minority in India. So, the issue arises: Where does the truth lie?
Symbiotic Relationships between Colonizer and the Colonized: Several native authors such as K. Bhembro, J. Correia-Afonso, T. Albuquerque, M. A. Couto, and others in Goa and in the diaspora who have published their autobiographies do not look at this issue as being black and white; instead, they   have a kinder perspective of colonization and describe the colonizers as “benefactors and pragmatic.” Typically, these writers emphasize that   the colonized and the colonizers enjoyed relationships that were amiable and mutually beneficial. Adv. Bhembro credits this win-win state of affairs to the colonizer and the cooperative “business-oriented and opportunistic nature of the natives.” Native Hindus and Catholics were members of the ruling inner socio-political circle; they spoke the same language, wore similar attire, drank wine, and displayed the same flair as did the colonizer. Albuquerque writes: “The colonizer created a chasm dividing the two communities (Hindu and Christian) in mind, spirit and soul.” Yet she goes on to state that people of both faiths had “traditions common to both and a shared language, and unique idioms remained strong bonds linking the two to their heritage and their home in Goa. GEM culture is a hybrid of East and West whereas the Hindu culture stayed largely untouched by an alien influence.” The members of both faiths held on to their culture, social practices, and values despite the strangeness and distress of colonization and evangelization. Margaret Couto describes the Goan Hindu and Christian as “leavened by the intellectual and spiritual traditions of the new rulers … more so among those Hindus who came in closer contact through Portuguese education, employment and travel.” John Correia-Afonso, a Jesuit priest, maintains that “The Goan Christian has a cultural legacy in which Indo-Hindu and Luso-Christian are inextricably mixed” and “the relatively open relationship between” the colonizer and colonized. According to Couto, the communities of both religions became “a product of religious cultural amalgamation of two different worlds - Indic and Iberian.” In our view, the secret ingredients which contributed to the preservation of Goan native culture were the social practices preserved by both communities - chiefly the native language and the joint-family system, which spanned several generations.
Robert S. Newman, a U.S.-based anthropologist who conducted in-depth field research in Goa noted in his book entitled Goan Anthropology: Mothers, Miracles and Mythology (2019), "There has emerged a syncretic Goan style ... a common identity despite religious differences ... most pronounced among the lower caste, but large numbers of high caste Hindus and Catholics also take part in certain key religious festivals, worshiping and honouring the same deities - e.g., Goddess Shanta Durga and Our Lady of the Miracles." In Newman’s view, “Goa has never been part of Portugal, but rather a slightly Lusitanized region of India . . . Goan culture must be seen as a synthesis which form a Hindu-Catholic one.” Hindus and Christians alike attended religious services such as Wednesday novenas at Our Lady of Perpetual Succour Church especially in times   of need such as illness, safe delivery of a baby, infertility, or other crises. At the feast of the Seven Sisters, celebrated in Mapusa and Shirgão in mid-April, some of the deities venerated are Christian and others are Hindu.
Native culture was vital in helping individuals and communities weather the strains caused by family crises, colonization, and translocation. The Hindus bore a much greater strain of colonization. The Catholics, however, had a much higher proportion of members living abroad, which tore the family apart. Children were often cared for by their grandparents or sent to boarding schools. All involved experienced the angst and anxieties of separation from each other. As a means of survival, they tended to support one another in major and minor crises. Both communities also had much in common. They fostered strong family and social ties, trusted in the Almighty and lived everyday “one crisis away from an existential tragedy in the family.” Resourceful GEMs who successfully integrated the cultures of the East and West to produce values which were acceptable to various socio-economic groups of the native society are to be commended.
Towards the end of the era of colonialism, Orlando Ribeiro, who was deputized by Salazar   to visit Goa in 1956, wrote, “The meager presence of lusotopic features (common heritage of feelings and culture of Portugal) among Goans compared to other colonial subjects in Africa and Brazil ... Goa appears to be the least Portuguese of all colonies.” He added, “I have witnessed a near total ignorance of our language, the persistence of a society not only strange and indifferent but even hostile to our presence, our limited influence encrusted as schist in the body of renascent Hinduism. All of this has left me very disillusioned about Goa ... Goans who share our language and customs, but not our feeling of patriotism. Patria for a Goan is his Goa, not Portugal ... The predominant relationship is of distance and suspicion when it is not an outright or camouflaged antipathy.” Apparently, Ribeiro did not receive the unwritten memo to encourage Goans to immigrate to British colonies, so that Lisbon could earn (more from) emigration taxes and foreign exchange from the application fees. Ribeiro’s issues are discussed later.
Lara Naik’s article on the "Heritage of the Goan Christian Gaudi Community - A Memoir" published in 2021 outlines how TODAY, this community preserves its matriarchal system including the cooperation of a woman’s landlord in asserting her traditional rights as a Gaokan -- the first person to plant the sampling of rice in the planting season and the first person to harvest the paddy. In addition, she describes how the Gaokan was/is given the “mann” (respect) in her village (Verna) by all villagers, which included other communities. What is more interesting is "even after conversion to Christianity, the Gaudi community continued to observe the original customs and traditions" including its non-vegetarian food habits and the rituals performed in front of ant hills. Naik continues, "The Gaudi community respected and worshiped nature and any water bodies like lakes and rivers" and annually carry out several cultural practices to sanitize the flowing water.   Clearly, modern societies could learn a lot from such environment-friendly traditions still prevalent in Goa in the Adivasi community. If all Goans do not maintain such practices, it reflects modernity rather than “conversion and colonization.”
Newman states, “A majority of Goans share a syncretic Hindu-Catholic religion – undefined, unlabelled, but mutually understood.” It is interesting to note that despite 451 years of colonialism, the various distinct ancient cultural tribal groups have survived in Goa - Gaudes, Kunbis, Velips, and Bandaris. Each group has kept its culture intact, which indicates that despite colonial edicts, societies that desired to maintain their own way of life and beliefs were successful in doing so. These groups made Goa their home even prior to the arrival of the GSB to the Konkan. Angela Barreto Xavier attributes this preservation of culture to “resourceful Goans – moved to a Western Way of life but retaining Eastern customs and traditions.” It is the language that binds the people belonging to different communities, castes, classes, and occupations.
Goans take pride in their ability to absorb foreign influences while preserving their own distinct values and ethos. Religious conversion, education, music, colonialism, and the Diasporas’ remittance economy exposed GEMs to the concept of “Equality” which had liberating effects on a restrictive, caste-based society. For Goans, colonization opened the door to a wider world. The following are some of the native Goan cultural practices which were especially "foreign and strange" to Europeans and existed in varying degrees throughout the colonial period.
1.            Marriages within caste strata.
2.            Child marriages (girls and boys).
3.            Extended and joint family systems.
4.            Native religious rituals, beliefs, and traditions.
5.            Strong beliefs in superstitions, myths, and legends.
6.            Educational and other disparities between the sexes.
7.            Individuals identifying with a social-caste stratum.
8.            Hygienic practices, including during menstrual cycles.
9.            Dress codes, including wearing of the loin cloth and saree.
10.          Strong reverence for and the role of deceased ancestors.
11.          Native approaches to healthcare and the use of herbal remedies.
12.          Observance of caste practices and other social segregation and discrimination.
13.          Strong adherence to social practices at milestones-in-life celebrations.
14.          The use of traditional clay cooking utensils and the grinding stone.
15.          The native language, Konkani / Marathi, is understood, spoken, read, & written.
16.          Arranged marriages with occasional betrothal at birth or sometimes before birth.
Current evidence from Asians who emigrated to Europe and the US suggests that their education, socio-economic progress, emancipation from restrictive traditional ways of life, and a broadening of their horizons caused cultural shifts and the adoption of “western ways of life” without any coercion from religious or governmental authorities. Today, Hindu men and women, who were raised in small villages in Gujarat, Kerala or Tamil Nadu hold on to their religion but change their outlook and attire after arriving in the United States. Many become non-vegetarians and even eat beef; this change in diet is more marked in the first and second generations rather than in the immigrant. This adaptation also applies to Indians who moved to the UK from India or Africa. Their creolization is not related to any religious conversion or other forms of coercion.
Similarly, "mimicry" of another culture cannot be attributed to religious missionaries or colonization, as suggested by TB Cunha and others. Instead, it is the result of human beings seeking socio-economic progress and their willingness to learn and adopt techniques to help achieve those goals. Historians, sociologists and other scholars who quote TB Cunha and others on topics related to colonizers and the denationalizing of Goans by missionaries need to be cognizant that his writings were published as part of his freedom struggle and reflect his ultranationalist views.   How would the jingoistic freedom fighters of the last century evaluate or label Indians today who imitate the west in terms of attire, food, music, interest in technology, etc. and seek to emigrate devoid of any pressure from foreign religions, missionaries, or official coercion?
GEM authors such as Mervyn Macial, Cyprian Fernandes, and Dr. Leo De Souza, to name a few, have proudly presented their heritage as having survived into the 20th and 21st centuries despite evangelization and colonization. Albuquerque’s books, which analyse the lifestyles of the diaspora in Bombay and Kenya during the 19th century, point to their cultural and economic success across the socio-economic spectrum. She particularly highlights the achievements of GEMs who preserved their culture despite the pressures of family separation. For example, Men and women -- both Hindus and Christians – the untrained ABC, skilled workers, intelligentsia, and the wealthy flocked to Bombay. Those who are interested in the topic should refer to the yeomen research presented in Teresa Albuquerque’s book Goan Pioneers in Bombay. Selma Carvalho’s book, Goans in East Africa 1865-1980 also presents detailed information on the challenges and achievements of diaspora Goans.
Equally important are the more than two dozen GEM cook books that provide recipes – soups, entrées, and desserts -- representing fusion cooking of the east (Konkan and Kanara) and west. Furthermore, even a cursory visit to villages in Goa, Bassein, and Mangalore, reveals an array of traditional cooking pots made from mud and clay, each with its own name and purpose. The must-have manual grinding-stone is STILL IN USE in many homes in the native land and in the diaspora. Modern cooking gadgets are considered the hallmark of authentic, but labour-saving GEM cuisine and denotes a refined chef. Throughout the period of colonialism, newly-built homes in the villages reflected a mix of native and European architecture, representing an evolving and advancing taste in style. The adaptation was not the result of any form of coercion; instead, the changes were made for practical purposes -- to meet the needs of privacy even in a joint family household, and the constraints related to seasonal hot weather and, heavy monsoon. In short, the residence reflected the owner’s status as a member of the “inner socio-political circle.”
As part of their newly emerging identity, the diaspora incorporated   European ways of behaviour with their own native practices. Distilling and retaining old traditions along with adding new practices led to a hybrid (fusion) social structure in terms of food, attire, music, dance, and outlook. Every generation shakes out and consolidates practices to devise a   novel composite culture which suits the new milieu and protects the members’ own interests and needs.
Some confuse the two perspectives of religion and culture with Goa Dourado and Goa India with two views of GEM identity. Yet a closer look suggests that Goa Dourado pretty much disappeared at the onset of the 18th century, after which GEMs had peace and security even though they experienced a LACK of economic prosperity, paved roads, and utilities. Certainly, the nostalgic term of endearment, bangarachem Goa, exists in the minds of every diaspora Goan even today. Goa’s out-migration of whites and mestizos in the18th century reflected the social, political, and economic decline of Lusitania. Natural disasters such as the massive 1775 earthquake in Lisbon also contributed to Lusitania’s downfall   and native in-migration, which accelerated in the 19th century. Yet even during this period, natives were leaving Goa. The exodus from Goa, which was initially a spurt turned into a torrent in the 19th century. Over this period, laborious hiking over the Ghats to reach Bombaim was replaced by sailing (1870) and travel by train (1887). According to Albuquerque, by 1888, a sixth of Goa's population had crossed the border, while Lisbon was trying to address its internal political, social, and economic upheavals.
Nationalism and emancipation should not be confused with Christianization or even anti-colonialism or, in the jargon of the 1960s, being anti-west or pro-communist. Rather, nationalism and emancipation are the result of a deep human desire for greater equality, freedom from caste and feudal oppression, for people to govern themselves and determine their own destiny. Unfortunately, misguided historical concepts led to the Vietnam War and other prolonged wars of independence during the 1970s. It is tragic that articles and papers published in scientific journals even currently tout such false, misleading, and dangerous linkages. In Goa and India, such erroneous news articles and op-ed pieces sow communal conflicts, without leaving any fingerprints of the author. They often do irreparable disservice to the native people. India’s first Prime Minister, Jawaharlal Nehru, while insisting that Goans are Indians, appreciated “the uniqueness of Goa and Goans.” Goans take pride in their ability to absorb foreign influences while preserving their own distinct values and ethos. Yet every Indian community is unique in its own way. We do not need a PhD-seeking student from the other side of the globe write about or propagate antagonism between various Indian communities. 
We are all aware of the long list of powerful rulers that governed Goa and India -- animists, Buddhists, Hindus, Jains, Muslims, and Christians; each left their mark in terms of their culture and religion –– as well as contributed innovative new ideas. History tells us that discord within Goans invited the outsider to disturb the peace and tranquillity in the region.   For example, a family quarrel in the Kabamba court resulted in the first Muslim invasion of Goa. Admiral Afonso Albuquerque was encouraged to invade Goa and displace the Sultan of Bijapur by Timoja Nayak and Mahalsa Pai (of Verne - Sardesai of Salcete); the pair had the blessing of the ruler of Hampi. So convincing were the two emissaries that Albuquerque reportedly informed his king that he saw them as “messengers of the Holy Spirit.” The story is probably true because until that day, the Iberians had not heard of the inland port of Goa or the Island of Tiswadi. In the process of colonizing Goa, the Portuguese brought to medieval Goa Renaissance Europe with all its ideals, especially regarding education of the youth, and opened the door for Goans to a wider world.
GEM culture, like cultures worldwide, is multifaceted in terms of religion, language, caste, family kinships, genealogy, and other caste-like groupings. In addition, architecture, music, dance, celebration of festivals etc., all reflect different aspects of the culture. And, as in all sustained societies, this complex cultural matrix (with varying levels of emphasis on each facet) provides for social harmony and continuity. GEM culture was a puree of practices by groups that migrated to the Konkan over eons of years and included the observance of caste hierarchy. All groups in GEM societies have similar family and social hierarchy as well as traditional ceremonies performed at important milestones in life. In the GEM matrix -- in the native land or the diaspora -- it is generally acknowledged that the men served as anchors and the women served as the glue that held the families (horizontal and vertical) and community together even under changing and turbulent conditions. While religion changed, the other aspects of everyday life of the Hindus and Christians remained the same – cultural practices, family structure (nuclear, extended joint family, multigenerational family living, and patriarchal joint family system), values, morality, language, and caste. The multi-generational, joint-family system guaranteed an efficient and dependable way of life. The grandparents enforced the daily cultural practices starting with the early morning religious and cultural rituals; by their example, the adults reinforced these values, and the youth followed them. And that is the way it was for the entire period of colonialism.
Philip Slater contends the 21st century culture does not meet three important human needs – community, engagement, and dependence. The high value placed on individualism and competition works against the priorities awarded to community and the human desire to live in trust, cooperation and friendship with those around. The modern-day practice of demanding change for change’s sake every few years is aimed at   introducing something novel specifically for the purpose of creating a new economic need which will boost consumerism. Often, these fads and ultra-modern ideas become socially acceptable even before society has the opportunity to evaluate present norms, to finesse the good and abandon the depraved practices. Traditionally, individuals are protected by stable institutions, which include the nuclear family, extended joint family, community, social organizations, government or quasi-government programs. 
Disruptions of GEM Societies: From the 16th century, Goa was the centrepiece of Portugal’s political, military, colonial, economic, and religious policy in Asia, extending from Mozambique to Japan. Many, but not all disruptions in GEM society were positive and not the result of Evangelization and Colonization. The beneficial changes included education, a broader perspective to life, exposure to an international milieu, and the socio-economic impact brought about by the Diaspora. The monetary transfers made by the diaspora to their families helped sustain village economies, dismantle traditional socio-economic strata, and eliminate grinding poverty and ignorance. That remarkable transformation represented the big break from traditional culture, which thoughtful sociologists and historians would be well advised to analyse. The diaspora recognized the importance of education and could afford it, too. Unfortunately, the Diasporas’ links to the church gradually and over generations weakened; in a few cases, they completely disappeared or were replaced by a cafeteria style of cherry-picking convenient beliefs and practices. Overtime, there was less cohesion, even though all mournfully complained about it. It is worth remembering Servapalli Radhakrishnan (1888-1975), the second president of India’s comment in his book, Karma and Freedom:   “We are what we are on account of our affinity with the past.”
The GEM non-religious culture at its core was / is Indian. There is universal agreement among academics on this score, although one can get the same answer by asking members of the previous generation. The entire community, both the converted and non-converted, practiced creolization - intermixing of religion, social culture, genes, and language etc. while preserving their joint nuclear and extended families. Many natives, especially the elite, looked upon the colonizer as an over-all patron -- each family carved out for themselves a niche of permanent influence and symbiotic mutually-beneficial relationships.  The Christians gravitated towards employment in the civil service departments, education, law, and healthcare. Hindus, on the other hand, controlled the collection of taxes (rendeiro), conducted the auction of slaves and items confiscated by the authorities, brokerage, countrywide commerce, money lending, and mineral mining operations. The Muslims opted for   inland (within Asia) transportation of commodities. Irrespective of religion, there were close bonds between colonizer and the colonized elites, a fact which was likely not lost on the plebian masses. Keshav Bhembro describes Goans as “selfish, business-oriented, and adaptable.” These qualities ensured their cooperation with the Iberians within their narrow field of endeavour, but also in the over-all administration of the OT. Today’s GEMs are comfortable in their skin and prosperous both in India and abroad; similarly, Hindus have adapted to and are prosperous in the Christian west. It is worth noting that since the diaspora tends not to value team work across community lines, the emigres’ diaspora may miss out on the “wisdom of the team” or philosophy of “strength in numbers.”
The economy-related migration, which resulted in a diaspora, began in the 17th century. The financial remittances, education, intellectual and economic success of the Diasporas neutralized the hegemony of the dominant native land-owning bourgeoisie (batkars and Bamons) and their lusotropicalims. By the 18th century, Estado da India geographically and economically continued to shrink, and out-migration increased. It was the diaspora’s remittances that boosted individual family’s and Goa’s economy rather than Portugal’s largess or the economic successes of native Goans. The revenue and foreign exchange helped the negative balance of payments of Goa’s imports and exports. In this respect, the overwhelming physical absence of native Goans in the homeland probably worked to the advantage of the native elite pre-1961 and to their disadvantage in and post-1961.
We hope this essay provides the readers with a vital framework of the Goan diaspora’s historical journey. As Shashi Tharoor wisely stated, “If you do not know where you have been, how do you know where you seek to go? History belongs in the past, but understanding it is the duty of the present.” 

Comments (1)
Thursday - Dec 22, 2022
This article again is badly researched. Pretty much all scholarship about Goan society from 1906 (year the first mining leases were given out) onwards is basically BS because it fails to account for the harsh reality that the majority of the "Goans" surveyed are really ghantti POGO poseurs. As for M. A. Couto's "work", it was called out as fantasy BS as soon as it was published:

The non-academic propaganda of this couple (spending their final years in the West) whose daughter married an East Indian (basically a Lusitanized Marathi manoos, hence the multiple pathetic attempts to push this fictitious GEM fantasy where they try to unify 3 separate groups with different cultures and histories) is in the same vein. The "syncretism" observed by Newman and others didn't begin till the last century and was only due to continuous media and government propaganda about the immigrated Hindus being natives, and equals of the Catholic native majority (or even "superior" according to various authors, including "Catholics" like Couto, because their ancestors didn't convert to Christianity). The Goa tribunal of the Inquisition wouldn't have tolerated any of the behaviour observed by Newman (Christians going to a temple is a direct violation of the First Commandment). Hindu society would've also shunned Hindus entering churches because of caste pollution rules regarding mlecchas.
Leave a Comment
* Name
* Email (will not be published)
* Enter verification code
* - Required Fields