This is a business roundtable between the President and the PM. It’s fascinating that even though Britain’s Asian population is 5% of the population versus 1% Indian-Americans; there are 2 Indians (at least) on his side of the table.
British society is invisibly white and though there are some sectors that are *cosmopolitan*; we are certainly behind the US since class is an additional factor here. A privileged Etonian, who dropped out, is equally if not better placed than the state-school Oxbridge kid.
Finally this article is so witheringly racist; Sajid Javid not invites to State Banquet. One of his “friends” joked to the newspaper that perhaps it was that Palace confused him with another son of a bus driver (Sadiq Khan).
12 thoughts on “Indian Americans “trump” Brit-Asians”
Indeed one of the things America does much better than any other country in the old continent is upward mobility. However imperfect it is in America, it’s a helluva lot better than in Europe and in Britain. Those old boy networks and their shibboleths are impossible to crack, no matter what your pedigree, even in nominally left leaning circles like the art world or the humanities.
First: Sorry, the points dont flow. Having a few and cant be bothered thinking too much.
upward mobility.: However imperfect it is in America, it’s a helluva lot better than in Europe and in Britain.
That too is semi myth, like the American Dream and goals of the Immigrant.
There has been very little upward mobility for poor whites (think Appalachians) and the original African Americans, the descendants of slaves.
Recent (post 1970’s) South Asian immigrants to the US are selected, either
a) got a decent education in their home country
b) or had the cash to get in to the US.
Indian-Americans point to CEO’s and like as achieving the dream.
Brit Asians or Brit Colonials dream is to become a Knight, Baronet or whatever. And that has been happening long time, even before the US admitted Asians as immigrants.
Seen any US Chinese/Japanese in the 19th century being feted in the US.
The French have a long history of acceptance of half bloods etc. Alexandar Dumas (1802-1870) was popular in France even while alive. He cannot even pass as white with the huge Afro.
Didn’t want to divert from my main point, but that’s pretty much what the qualifier `however imperfect’ was intended to allude to. America is by no means anywhere near a perfect meritocracy*, but it seems to be the only place in the western world where the inner circles of the establishment are not completely closed off to outliers. In politics for example, the only equivalent to Nimrata Randhwa, Bobby Jindal, Kamala Harris or Preet Bharara I can think of in Europe is Leo Varadkar (and his Indianness is about as pronounced as Ben Kingsley or Nasser Hussain’s).
Re: France — go to any of France’s Grandes Ecoles (with entry based on competitive exams), and you’ll find a non-zero fraction of people with roots in the French colonies. Go up the chain (in politics, business or industry) and these people are nowhere to be found except in a few token ministerial positions. The French are even more lip service when it comes to their talk of egalite when it comes to sharing the reins of actual power.
* One could even add more to your points above.
Poor rural whites have a lot of social mobility, but it usually comes with leaving the poor areas they come from. It’s a lot easier to break into American high society than English high society, and Americans aren’t even expected to feel ashamed of their ‘common’ background.
In America, upward mobility has traditionally come from, well, mobility. If people faced barriers where they lived, or couldn’t cut it there for whatever reasons, they could pack up and move to a different part of a vast country. But surveys show American mobility having vastly decreased, which I suspect accounts for relatively low upward mobility today.
(Indians in the past generation or two have been following this model too, and I think it has shown in the GDP numbers.)
In the US, one can get ahead if one is confident, enterprising, and comes with no baggage. Unfortunately, that combination is quite a lot to ask of most people. Immigrants have it. “Somewhat downtrodden” locals, like blacks and Appalachian whites, don’t. In the US, if you depend on the state to facilitate your career (basically to do anything more than build infrastructure and maintain law and order), you will never get ahead.
Many Americans (whites and other alike) are rightfully poud of this fact. Non-white races might cry about racism in USA but at the end of the day they know that if there’s a little hope left, it’s only in USA!!
AFAIK the only way for any rural American to move up the ladder is by getting a university degree and moving to a nearby big city. It’s even more true in case of women, or else they will be knocked up by the end of 18th bday and will be slaving for Wal-Mart at the same time being abused by her trashy af BF or husband.
the usa has way more nonwhites than european countries. nonhispanic whites is 60% and whites is 72%.
this means american racism and antiracism have both been more noticeable and visible than in europe, which is mostly white.
britain in the last census was 87% white. that’s as white as montana.
I think the USA’s president model gives more leeway for executive style lateral entry to people from minorities group who may not be as electorally significant. That could be the reason why you have 2 Indian-american folks with Trump. Had it been a democratic president perhaps you could even have more. They are more like Technocrats than politicians.
While the Brits and India follow the same model where representation of your “group” depends on the demographic heft you carry and it leads to more “politicians” in the cabinet than technocrats.
Seems like Indo-Canadians are well represented in the Canadian executive compared to the UK even though it is a parliamentary system.
Currently there are 5 South Asians out of 7 visible minorities in the Canadian cabinet.
4 of 5 are Sikh. 1 is Afghan.
Sikh-Canadians are highly represented.
Well Indo Canadians are better represented , but i dont think Brit Asian are that “non -represented” in the executive as a whole. After all, we could perhaps have Brit Asian head Britain before a Indo-american or a Indo -Canadian could.
US with its Presidential system does provide unique opportunities with minuscule but high-er socio economic demography (like jews and India-Americans)
Tangential point- can something be done so “Asian” is not exclusively used for East Asians in the US!
It is inaccurate, and sometimes leads to confusion with real-life implications, e.g. medical journal with sloppy editing describing studies on East Asians as Asians, and confusing readership in India that data applies to south Asians. Have also met some Chinese / Koreans from the old country who seem not even aware India is in Asia (at least in its English usage, must know in own tongue).
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