Date of Award
Master of Arts (MA)
The purpose of this study is to examine how Hinduism is practised outside its Indian homeland. The focus of the study is the practice of Hinduism in Guyana and the transplantation of this Guyanese version into Canada. Using the postmodern anthropological concept of the "invention of tradition" as the underlying theoretical framework, the study demonstrates how Hindu immigrants in Guyana and their descendants have, over the past several decades, tried to reshape aspects of their traditional Hindu culture and religion to demonstrate in direct and symbolic ways a continuing sense of their Indian identity.
The study examines this development as a two stage process: first, among East Indian immigrants in Guyana and secondly among their descendants who migrated to Canada and settled in and around Cambridge, Ontario. The study was based on field work carried out in a Guyanese Hindu temple, the Radha Krishna Temple at Cambridge. The analysis has revealed that the origin and development of this temple community is a response on the part of Guyanese Hindus living in Cambridge to their present situation as . immigrants in Canada. While the multi-ethnic Canadian environment requires them to define a specific sense of Hindu identity, their status as "strangers" or "aliens" in Canada calls for the development of a coping mechanism. As a result, they have formed a community based on a common Hindu religious affiIiation.
Wuaku, Albert Kafui, "The Radha Krishna Temple Tradition: A Guyanese Hindu Community in Cambridge, Ontario" (1995). Open Access Dissertations and Theses. Paper 5275.
McMaster University Library