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Global Mixed Race$
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Rebecca C. King-O'Riain, Stephen Small, Minelle Mahtani, Miri Song, and Paul Spickard

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780814770733

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: March 2016

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9780814770733.001.0001

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“Split Me in Two”

“Split Me in Two”

Gender, Identity, and “Race Mixing” in the Trinidad and Tobago Nation

Chapter:
(p.44) 3 “Split Me in Two”
Source:
Global Mixed Race
Author(s):

Rhoda Reddock

Publisher:
NYU Press
DOI:10.18574/nyu/9780814770733.003.0003

This chapter discusses the hybrid identity of people in Trinidad and Tobago. Sarah England, observed that in Trinidad and Tobago, “the absorbency of blackness can be contrasted with the purity of Indianness which is exclusive rather than inclusive.” When Indian is mixed with anything else it becomes something other than Indian by definition. This significant distinction could be attributed to a number of factors—the salience of Hindu notions of “purity” and dread of “polluting” influences and the negativism associated with “Blackness” and by extension “Africanness.” As such, the tension between these two strands of identity formation has been central to notions of citizenship in Trinidad and Tobago.

Keywords:   hybrid identity, Trinidad, Tobago, purity, polluting, citizenship

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