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Diaspora and Transnational Studies
Hui Kian Kwee

1 Name: Tiffany Ip Course code: DTS201H5F Readings: Brubaker, R. The „diaspora‟diaspora and Cohen, R. Classical notions of diaspora: transcending the Jewish tradition Précis 1 Both of the readings are arguing about the changes of the definition for the term, „diaspora‟ from the past till now, and also the transnationalism of diaspora. In the first reading, “The „diaspora‟ diaspora”, Brubaker states that the usage of the term „diaspora‟ is more broadening nowadays. He suggests that „diaspora‟ is not solely represented Jewish diaspora or the other „classical‟ diasporas, Armenian and Greek. „Diaspora‟ is essential to any and every nameable population category which dispersed in space. He shows that „diaspora‟ appears as the keyword only once or twice annually in treatise in 1970s. In late 1980s, concern and discussion of „diaspora‟ starts to burst out. „Diaspora‟ becomes keywords of about thirteen times in late 1980s, and almost one hundred and thirty times in the year of 2001 merely. As time goes by, „diaspora‟, is more widely used. The term becomes ordinary and causal. The original use of „diaspora‟ as the follows: Most early discussions of „diaspora‟ were firmly based on the conceptual homeland which was related to a paradigmatic case. The paradigmatic case was certainly the Jewish diaspora. However, recently, „diaspora‟, has been applied to emigrant groups which continue their involvement in their homeland from 2 overseas, such as the category of long-distance nationalists. Brubaker notes that Albanians, Basques, Hindu Indians, Irish, Japanese, Kashmiri, Koreans, Kurds, Palestinians, and Tamils have been conceptualized as „diaspora‟. Also, labor migrants who maintain emotional and social ties with their homeland have been described as „diaspora‟. Furthermore, Brubaker cites that the transethnic and transborder linguistic categories, such as Francophone, Anglophone and Lusophone communities, along with the religious communities, such as Hindu, Sikh, Buddhist, Confucian, Huguenot, Muslim and Catholic are defined as „diasporas‟ too. Therefore, He indicates that „diaspora‟ is not meant of an entityor a bounded group. Instead, „diaspora‟ should be treating as a category of practice, claims and stances. As a category of practice, „diaspora‟ is used to make claims, to articulate projects, to formulate expectations, to mobilize energies, and to appeal to loyalties. As idiom, stance, and claims, „diaspora‟ is a way of formulation the identities and loyalties of population. In the second reading, „Classical notions of diaspora: transcending the Jewish tradition‟, Cohen talks about the history of Jewish diaspora, the influence of „Babylon
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