Earlier this year, someone asked me on Twitter if there was a difference between the terms East Indian and South Asian. I knew there was. I knew that East Indian was outdated but I also didn’t now why it existed in the first place.
I love it when someone asks me something thought-provoking, and isn’t afraid to do so. Often, I think we swallow our questions and curiosities because we don’t want to offend someone else, but it’s through these conversations that we all get to learn something. When a question is posed without judgement, it really opens the doors to a healthy dialogue.
In this case, I enlisted the help of encyclopedia.com and read a somewhat complicated explanation of the origin of this term. I relayed my childhood confusions over all the ‘Indian’ terms (East Indian, West Indian, Red/Native Indian) in this column for Peace Arch News.
I also shared a couple simple ideas on taking the insult out of categorization.
Read the full article here and let me know if you have ever been confused by these terms or have had any experiences being categorized incorrectly!