Maybe if it was just called “Adolph’s” it would have a more swanky image. But in India, the less subtle “Hitler” is a hit, bringing to the fore, that is fore, not foreskin and seven days ago, that there is a national obsession in india for fairness, for the lighter side of the social complexion. In a way, its hardly surprising that these tensions should be abrasive in a caste system. But a hitler store is truly absurd: Hitler could have neatly spliced the Indian between his niggers and jews rants to fill out the earthier tones of his chromatic scale. Needless to say, stories like this, only reinforce the merchandising of whiteness in all its forms such as saturation marketing for whitening creams, primarily geared to women, but the cosmetic and medication industry is catching up with men as well. All in all, there is a national psychoses at work and an absence of understanding whereby discrimination is examined as a social sickness. But then again, in countries like Israel, cosmetic surgery-nose jobs- is of epidemic popularity….
(see link at end)…:Staggering ignorance, or canny marketing in a country where Adolf Hitler holds a curious appeal?
An entrepreneur in India insists he meant no offence by calling his clothing store Hitler, saying it was inspired by a nickname for his business partner’s grandfather, apparently because of the older man’s strict nature.
“We had put up a cloth banner for over a month saying ’Hitler opening shortly’, no one objected to the name then,” proprietor Rajesh Shah told the Times of India. Only later, he said, did they learn more about Hitler, and now they don’t have the money to change the sign and print new business cards.
The excuse would carry a bit more weight if the branding for the store in Vastrapur, Gujarat, didn’t also have a swastika dotting the ‘i’ in its name. And although the symbol has ancient significance for Hindus, and appears regularly in India, in that context it normally sits on one of its flat edges, forming square shape. The shop has its swastika balanced on a point, forming a diamond, as the Nazis displayed it.
Protestations that this was nothing more than an innocent mistake might also seem more convincing were there not earlier instances of Hitler casting an enduring spell on some Indians.
In 2006 a Nazi-themed cafe called Hitler’s Cross opened in a Mumbai suburb, complete with swastika and reportedly a large portrait of Hitler. The proprietor told the New York Times that “Hitler is a catchy name. Everyone knows Hitler.” In the face of protests he later changed the name simply to the Cross Cafe….
Western reporters were staggered a few years ago to learn that Hitler’s manifesto and memoir, Mein Kampf, was racing up the bestseller list in India. The book sold 10,000 copies in just six months in 2009. Some saw the dark influence of extremist Hindu groups but merchants said it was bought by business students for its inspirational value. Read More:http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/world/hitler-clothing-store-in-india-causes-uproar/article4507530/
(see link at end)…Members of Ahmedabad’s tiny Jewish community, who number less than five hundred, have approached the store about renaming it, calling the German leader a monster, Mr. Shah said. But so far Mr. Shah and his co-owner have resisted a change.
“None of the other people are complaining, only a few Jewish families. I have not hurt any sentiments of the majority Hindu community. If he did something in Germany, is that our concern?” Mr. Shah asked.
He said he thought Hitler was a “good, catchy” name for his shop. In fact, his business plan seems to include cashing in on the name to attract customers. “We have not written anything below the sign or on our cards to indicate what we sell to generate mystery,” he said. “The customers who come in tell me they came in seeing the name.”
So far, business is good, Mr. Shah said….An apology is not forthcoming from Prakash G., who goes by his first name, the manager of an Internet advertising company that was first named Adolf Hitler Inc. when it started in May 2011. The Tamil Nadu-based company changed its name to AHI ADS in January, bowing to what he called “public pressure” and the huge amount of negativity it generated, Mr. Prakash said.
Asked about the usage of a variation of the swastika symbol on his current Web site, Mr. Prakash said that AHI ADS was an abbreviation of “Adolf Hitler Inc. Ads.” He added that he did not believe that Hitler was “such a bad person.”
“I have read his autobiography and like some of his ideas,” Mr. Prakash said. Read More:http://india.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/08/30/in-india-businesses-named-after-hitler-defend-their-decision/
( see link at end)…Growing up in India I never really thought about the color of my skin. It was only after living in London and New York that I began to conceive of myself as a person of color. I realize now that this was largely a symptom of my reasonably privileged class status in a country in which color is just one in a long list of things that separates one person from another. Maybe it is because India’s problems of poverty, illiteracy and the ever increasingly divide between the “have’s” and the “have-nots’” steal the limelight, but it is not a country that is usually included in discussions of race and racial discrimination. Take a look at the diversity of color you see in a cross-section of Indians, and take note of the women who make it as Bollywood’s presently reigning queens, and you too might think that India desperately needs to be included in the global discussions on race.
With India’s booming economy and rapid increase of foreign investment, each time I have been back in the last five years I am excited to see that the population of non-Indians in the urban areas is increasing by leaps and bounds. What is not so exciting about this though, is to see the ways in which the Indian population deals with these non-Indians- sadly, many of these interactions are defined by the color of the given “foreigner.”
In this context I was horrified to come across a magazine article by an African-American man living in Delhi and pursuing his PhD in Economics at the Delhi School of Economics. His situation of dealing with outrageous and blatant racism on a daily basis is heightened by the fact that his partner is a white American who is afforded special privileges by virtue of his whiteness, and he is a black man. In this extremely personal and sensitive article in Outlook magazine, Diepiriye Kuku tells us, “the Delhi public literally stops and stares. It is harrowing to constantly have children and adults tease, taunt, pick, poke and peer at you from the corner of their eyes, denying their own humanity as well as mine… Once I stood gazing at the giraffes at the Lucknow Zoo only to turn and see 50-odd families gawking at me rather than the exhibit.” As if this isn’t enough to scar someone, he describes feeling like an “exotic African creature… spectacle, stirring fear and awe,” as a guard announces him saying “an African has come.” Read More:http://blisted.breakthrough.tv/culture-shockers-what-shade-of-brown-is-approved-in-india-an-african-american-and-indian-tell-their-story-5539