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A sadu sitting along the ghats of the Ganges River. Photo by Jen Goings, India Semester.

My unknown India

In response to Regina’s question about ‘why India,’ and what’s a possible connection to some who have made India their home, I come from a long family tradition of diaspora. On my grandfather’s side we are Ashkenazi Jews from Silesia, then the Holy Roman Empire, now Poland. My family left Silesia for England, then South Africa, then India. Some of my ancestors came to India in 1730 from Portugal, and another wandered into India from Poland in the early 1800s. These Portuguese and Polish men married my great- great Indian grandmothers. My Indian ancestry is predominantly southern. One family name is Subrahmania, which I believe is a common Southern Indian name. We are not traveling to where my family lived (my mother’s first three years were in Kolcutta, but I am still excited to envision my ancestors in their homeland.