Transoceanic South Asian female silent voices and the bureaucratic weapons of resistance to the state apparatus: from the Indian subcontinent to postcolonial Portugal

Resultado de pesquisarevisão de pares

Resumo

The day I set foot at Fauza’s Lisbon home to listen to her life story, she showed me documents that ranged from primary school ID cards and diplomas to work references. Initially, I couldn’t understand why those documents would be necessary to tell her life story. Born in 1962 in Karachi, Pakistan, Fauza was only nine months old when her parents decided to move to colonial Mozambique. At that time, I wanted to listen to her sensory narratives of belonging to faraway lands, such as South Asia and Mozambique. I did not expect to see her bureaucratic proof of belonging to that former Portuguese colony. Only when conducting archive research at the Portuguese National Archive, did I understand Fauza’s purpose and heart. Persecuted and marginalized for decades, South Asians fought the contrarieties of a controlling colonial regime by needing to prove their legitimacy within the Portuguese imperial domain. Documents of identity and of right to remain in the territory were their only “weapons of resistance” (Scott, 1985) to a bureaucratic colonial state. With the end of colonial rule, much remained the same. In this paper, I will draw on archive research to discuss how subjects of South Asian origins in colonial Mozambique used legal documentation to defy the Portuguese colonial rule after 1961. I will also draw on ethnographic data collected at Fauza’s Lisbon home to decolonize the archive by stressing the colonized female “voice standpoint” (Ribeiro, 2019), which is often silenced in official state documents.
Idioma originalEnglish
Estado da publicaçãoPublicado - mai. 2023
EventoTransatlantic Women's Networks: Cultural Engaggements from the 19th Century to the Present - Universidade Católica Portuguesa, Lisbon
Duração: 11 mai. 202312 mai. 2023

Conferência

ConferênciaTransatlantic Women's Networks: Cultural Engaggements from the 19th Century to the Present
País/TerritórioPortugal
CidadeLisbon
Período11/05/2312/05/23

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