Tidbit: It's Election Season...In The Maldives

The Maldives are one of those South Asian countries that are not just neglected, but completely forgotten.  I'm pretty certain that if one did a poll of South Asian Americans like me and asked them to list the countries in South Asia, the results would be, um, underwhelming.

As such, I don't know enough to write about the elections in the Maldives on the 8th of October.  That's the first round, according to a source from the Maldives; if no one gets over 50% it moves to the second round. They say, "Its looking pretty messy at the moment, we've just started voter registration for the first time ever, and i dont know how they're going to do it three weeks....and they're not registering everyone, only those who are living outside their permanent 'islands'."

In lieu of trying to offer you anything remotely resembling commentary or analysis on something I know nothing about, here are a couple of links where you can find out more.  Minivannews is a good site for Maldivian news if you're interested.  mvblogosphere is a blog aggregator for Maldivian blogs.  It has some interesting posts about a whole range of topics.


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The history of Maldives, in

The history of Maldives, in particular its history as a democracy and the history of the process of elections there, is an interesting topic for those of Indian origin (I don't know why, but I dislike that word "diaspora" ;-)) given Indian involvement in these over the decades, the influence of Dravidian and Tamil culture, attempts by PLOT et al to carry out coups, and Indian military action. I am no expert on the matter, but I think attention to the islands is germane. In a troubling development, the Maldives recently adopted a modification to their constitution that requires adherence to Islam as a prerequisite for citizenship.

Germane like Jackson. And

Germane like Jackson. And highly neglected, which is probably particularly bad for those intersted in understanding South Asian The religious constitutional item interesting - do you know any more? I've studied similar stuff in Pakistan, Bangladesh, and India and it's really really interesting the way that it plays out once the notion of Islam is introduced as a potential legal norm or framework for politics.

I'm also curious, to derail my own thread :), why you don't like "diaspora." I grew up in the U.S. Asian community, so I think that might be why I gravitate towards it (plus I was around a lot of Jewish folks). But there is something about it that nags at me. Maybe "culturally stateless" or "nationally intersectional" or "third space" would be more apropos? :)

By the way, I love to remind people that the Roma and Sinti were originally from India - first post diaspora!

Dr, I wouldn't say that a


I wouldn't say that a 'desi like you' wouldn't know (i grew up in a community with a strong reform jew presence) and "Maldive Fish" is a commonly lusted after food item during visits with family.

Some of my ammamma's friends live there and good thing too--the patriarch of this family was an alcoholic prior to moving there--but there is very little space on which one can actually live. maybe that's part of why there's so little exposure/awareness.

maybe that’s part of why

maybe that’s part of why there’s so little exposure/awareness.

nah. it's because of the power dynamics of knowledge production on south asia, i'm pretty sure (both inside and outside the academy). Like so.


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