ASIAN 580: Sikh Diaspora

Course Level: Graduate

Course Description:This course looks at the development of one of South Asia’s most visible and distinctive diasporic communities (the Sikhs) and specifically at the Sikh diaspora.  The Sikh Diaspora began in the nineteenth century as former soldiers from the British Sikh regiments began to explore other colonies for opportunities. Sikh have settled across the globe; the two largest Diasporic communities are in England and Canada. Diasporic life presents unique opportunities and challenges for the tradition and nations they have settled in. This course examines how Sikh community networks have adapted to globalization. Students will explore the challenges migration creates in terms of creating alternate community norms through multicultural interaction by diasporas in Canada, England, and the United States. Students examine events and documents reflecting issues faced by the Sikhs such as coverage by news coverage, film, and documents created by community members and mainstream media. Students will discuss how debates on religious identity and human rights, engendered violence, popular culture, visibility, entrepreneurship, and honor killings are shaped by interactions between the Sikh community, other minorities, majoritarian perceptions, and democratic institutions such as the judiciary.


Arvind-Pal S. Mandair
Professor, Asian Languages and Cultures 

Tara Singh & Balwant Kaur Chattha, Gurbax Singh & Kirpal Kaur Brar Professor of Sikh Studies

Philosophy/Religion/Postcolonial Theory/Sikh Studies/South Asian Studies

Office: 202 South Thayer Street
Office 6016
Ann Arbor, MI 48104-1608

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