In his Global Me, Zachary provided the readers with a tour of the New, New Brave World and introduced us to fascinating characters, ranging from high-tech entrepreneurs to international aid workers, who posses the attractive mix of “roots” and “wings,” that is, hyper-mobile “global hybrids” with “transnational identities,” who won’t stay put in one place, who experience “the breakdown of the unitary self, the rising appetite for diversity, the growing taste for gumbo [bold mine-DL], the proliferation of voluntary attachments to places, practices and communities.” These individuals with roots in more than one nation and with wings to fly anywhere and anytime were “the fruits of the new patterns in migration and mobility,” Zachary wrote. “They are the future,” he concluded. ~Leon Hadar

A growing taste for gumbo?  That’s proof of a new cosmopolitanism?  What does an appreciation for masala chai suggest?  The Apocalypse?

Dr. Hadar also talks about the story that explodes all of these fantasies of globalised humanity.

Update: Incidentally, I had heard about The Namesake when it was first released and saw a copy of the book in the airport bookstore during my brief exile in Philadelphia.  There I was, wandering past the stacks of dreadful paperback novels and copies of Maxim, and suddenly Kal Penn’s loving face was staring back at me.  Kal Penn, best known to the stoner set through his work in Harold and Kumar Go To White Castle, is actually a somewhat decent actor who made the obligatory desi, “We are all desis, bhaiyye!” movie in Dude, Where’s The Party? (originally titled Where’s The Party, Yaar?), though he was actually upstaged by the relative unknown (Sunil Malhotra) who played the visiting FOB Indian, Hari (or, as he insists on calling himself when meeting new people, Harish Kumar Satish Kumar Patel).  Now he plays the desi torn between two worlds in Mira Nair’s adaptation of The Namesake, ultimately (so I understand) choosing in the end to return to the old country and his own people (which is also the take-home message of that Shah Rukh Khan vehicle Swades, which overflows with India’s Dilwale-esque call to NRIs everywhere: “Aaja, pardesi, tera des bulaaye re!”)The problem of the divided desi is normally resolved in other such stories by the untimely-yet-comical death of the gauri who has attempted to take away the Indian man from his people (Bollywood, Hollywood) or by stealing back the Indian woman who has become involved with a white guy (Second Generation) and returning to India with her.  This latest story sounds less interesting than the Lear-like BBC production Second Generation, but might still hold some interest for me, since I have become something of a Mira Nair fan over the years.