12 imagesThis project was done for The Museum for African Art in New York City, in collaboration with anthropologist Linda Beck who interviewed seven African Muslim immigrants in New York City. “Identity is commonly viewed as multifaceted and situational, with a single group identification becoming particularly salient depending on the context. This paper examines the multifaceted identities of West African Muslims in New York City to investigate the alleged situational nature of identity and its impact on group membership and relations.” Dr. Linda Beck on her project.
16 imagesJalal is a rickshaw puller in Dhaka. He and his wife, Helena, have five daughters. His eldest daughter works in a garment factory, the second eldest daughter recently married and is living with her husband, the third eldest works as a housemaid, and the youngest two attend primary school at a local NGO. None of the children have gone beyond primary school. Jalal, his wife and their four daughters at home, live in a single room large enough to hold only a queen size bed and a cabinet. The rent for this space eats up two thirds of Jalal’s monthly income. The income from his two daughters helps make ends meet. The life of a rickshaw puller in Bangladesh is financially and physically grim. Most rickshaw pullers live in poverty. The draw to pulling a rickshaw is that it requires no education, skill or capital, and can be started immediately with income that day. It’s an attractive option for the many rural poor flocking to the cities in search of employment. Jalal would like to do something else, because pulling a rickshaw is too hard, but he doesn’t have the means.