There's another angle too. Americanism is aspirational for most Indians, but those with engineering backgrounds manage to get to America much easier than those with humanities degrees even from top colleges. And what's more, 1/
Those of us who work a few years at Infy and then go to the US don't even act like our stint in a major US city such a big deal, and horrors, even choose to come back home after a few years because we prefer our life in India.
And we go to burning man like a tourist 2/
And say it was just "okay". People like the reporter in question can't digest that, because to them it seems like we're wasting a chance to subsume ourselves in the first world and leave our shitty Indian identity behind.

But millennials onwards, we don't buy it. 3/
We engage with the world on our own terms. The West is cool, but when you can get Taco Bell down the street from your ancestral home, it's no longer such a big deal. Plus, in the West, we see so many cultures just being themselves and not desperately trying to become Westernized
At this airport, I saw an older Korean man and an older Indian man, have nothing in common, except a desperate urge to smoke, neither spoke English, and they worked together to find the smoking area and shared cigarettes from their home countries. American ones aren't as good. 4/
That's how the global Indian reckons with the world, increasingly. As equals, as someone out there with a mission and a job, even if it's just to find a place to light up. 5/
And we also see things we were told to be ashamed of get packaged and sold by the West for a premium, be it a steel tiffin carrier or putting turmeric in all the things. We realize we don't have to be ashamed of who we are anymore. 6/
Rather, it's a liability to be ashamed. You miss out on bringing Lays Magic Masala packets for your board game group who devour them in no time and ask for more. Or finding your colleagues have taken to saying 'shata' when code breaks because you do and it's more succinct. 7/
Marrying into an American family, instead of alienating me from Indianness has made me reckon with it and stop being ashamed of it,and wear it proudly, because my family is proud of their Mexicanness, their Polishness, their Native identity, even if those were generations ago. 8/
This is what anglophones sitting in India don't get. The average Westerner finds Indianness cool, even if a section of their media doesn't.

Even if not K-pop cool, it's cool enough. 9/
Anyway. People who deride the NRI experience feel rather like frogs in the well. It's probably not worth a ten-tweet thread telling them they are wrong, but oh well. 10/10.
Okay this got some slight attention so let me add a little more. Remember this AITA?

This is stark and extreme but see the responses. No one likes self-loathing about your culture. Don't be that guy. It just makes people uncomfortable.
The one thing I've realized is the average person likes stories of triumph of the human spirit irrespective of culture. What they don't want is your baggage about your culture. That's just too much work to deal with.
I notice people from the world over react well when I write stories where I'm sure about where I'm coming from in my culture/background. Maybe they need some extra explanations, but it's often well received.
So, if you want to write stories about India for an international audience, write it from a position of strength. You don't have to go all <insert booker winner> kashtapadra fiction. The average person doesn't care to read that.
Write stories that are fun to read, with relatable protagonists and you're there most of the way. Also with selfpub/internet pub being an option, you don't have to work on appealing to the gatekeepers. Focus directly on an audience. The stories are just better that way.

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More from @lilastories

24 Aug
We now see how a book is banned even before release. A certain British gentleman seems responsible for this.

This is not new.

It happened before in 1907.

An Indian wrote a history book.
Brits banned it even before it released.

That Indian? Veer Savarkar.

#bloomsburyindia
It's funny to me because I'm writing the chapters about how Savarkar tried to get his book published but found it impossible as the British empire threatened and scared every publisher.

The modus operandi hasn't changed in 113 years. #bloomsburyindia
Savarkar wrote a book about the history of the 1857 revolt, and was the first one to call it the First War Of Indian Independence, as opposed to Sepoy Mutiny.

Obviously the British didn't like that. #bloomsburyindia
Read 27 tweets
9 Jul
1. husband not a vassal of the marathas
2. ears can't handle that much weight
3. no looted family wealth through generations to draw from.
4. not getting paid by the british to stay put and not revolution.
5. i don't care for 19th century mughal beauty standards.
One thing I'm coming to realize is the mughal economy was very palace-based. like they just used the wealth on themselves. didn't start many new institutions of learning, didn't invest in new tech, didn't improve soft power relations with neighboring kingdoms.
didn't work on alleviating poverty in the kingdom either. instead, most of the money just went in constant war and expansionism. which is an issue because destruction of any sort is a net negative for the economy. and what didn't go in war went in expensive things for nobles.
Read 5 tweets
28 May
Okay. It's #Savarkar_Jayanti. #Savarkar's birth anniversary. We all know he went to Kalapani. But do we know WHY?

I'm writing a novel based off of those events, so I've been extensively reading on them. A thread:
In 1905, India was in the throes of British rule. The Indian National Congress was nothing more than an old dudes club where they passed pointless resolutions on everything.

Three of its members disagreed. Lala lajpat Rai, Bal Gangadhar Tilak, Bipin Chandra Pal. Lal-Bal-Pal.
They were more or less just writing articles highlighting the atrocities of the British on Indians, and even that was getting shut down. Tilak was sent to prison in Mandalay, Burma for his seditious articles.
Read 71 tweets

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