Friday, February 26, 2010

Africa's lost tribe in Gujarat, and Goa, India

On my last trip to India, out of the blue I asked a BBC reporter if India had Africians. I really had no idea why I even asked the question, and was shocked by his reply. Yes, they do have an African population and they are known as Siddi's. They are descedants of the ethiopians. I vowed to myself that on my next trip that I would make a point to go and visit the community myself and take photos. As my upcoming trip is just days away, the Siddi's have really been on my mind. I went to a few different book stores, but they didn't have any information. What I do know is that India has a prehistoric relationship to Africa. Also the slavery of Africans commenced in India during the fifteenth century and continued till end of nineteenth century. Goa, India had a thriving slave trade. The faith that many Siddi's practice is Hindu, Muslim, and Christian religions, they inter-marry without any reservation across the religions. India has a prehistoric relationship to Africa and its art.

I will go with an interpreter who speaks Gujarati. Over the next few days, I will be thinking of quetions that will help explain how this community operates, and what oral history they are willing to share.

No comments: