Southern Crossings is a writers’ collective based in Australia. We aim to reimagine Australia, South Asia, and the world, through South Asian bodies and minds. Southern Crossings emerged in a free-range, water birth from the mediatized canal of the South Asian Australian Writing Network (SAAWN). Our primary aim is to provide a space for the voices of South Asians, and those of the South Asian diaspora, who live in Australia. And to be a repository, and a rich vein, of South Asian views of Australia, South Asia, and the world, as well as of global views of South Asia. Finding little space for people like us in the Australian national imaginary and mediascape, and moved by kafila.org towards ‘becoming media’, we decided to make our own space. In true South Asian style, we are bringing all the relatives with us.
We are incredibly biased and opinionated. We do not aim to present a balanced view of anything. If you want balance, go do a yoga class. We do not say that we know all there is to know about South Asia and Australia, even if we actually do. This is a space for radical, innovative, transformational thinking about Australia, South Asia and the world. We encourage dialogue and discussion via our comments sections. Shoot the ideas, not the messenger. Personal attacks and nasty comments will be reported to our resident glitterbomber. We agree with the comments policy of kafila.org and The Guardian. In case that’s not clear enough, this is a good rule of thumb: If you wouldn’t say it to your mother, don’t say it to us. Remember, ASIO is already watching, and knows exactly which key on your keyboard you are going to hit even before you hit it.
There is a star formation on the current Australian flag called the Southern Cross. If you look up at the sky from this blog’s headquarters, you can pretend that you have seen it. The name also reflects our healthy preoccupations with movement, border-crossings and uncrossings over sea, earth, sky, bodies and minds, crosses all of kinds, both religious and secular and burdensome, spillages and reinventions and stereo-un-types. We also happen to like stars. And skies. And in our own small ways we endeavour to reclaim the Southern Cross so that it becomes a series of unceasing Crossings.
We acknowledge the First Peoples of this land, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders, as the custodians of the land on which we stand.
The following list, of countries that are usually considered to be part of South Asia, is purely in alphabetical order. It is not a shit-sandwich, nor does it reflect our biases, we promise. The term ‘South Asia’ usually refers to Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Burma, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka. We also include all the sea, and sky that surrounds these lands.
The term South Asia has also been adopted in some quarters as an umbrella term and advocacy moniker for political/cultural mobilisation by like-minded people of South Asian origin, who are now spread all across the world.
If you are North American or Canadian, or even Icelandic, and especially if you are Icelandic, and wish your country to be included in South Asia, we have no problems with that. After all, we were all one landmass once, and evolved like much single-origin coffee, from Africa. So by identifying as South Asian, you are really going back, at least some way, if not all the way, to your roots. Australia and South Asia used to be part of a single landmass in the time of Pangea and Gondwanaland. This blog is an attempt at crossing back into what once was, and imagining new crossings into what is yet to be.
There are very few spaces like Southern Crossings that exist in Australia or indeed, the world. In this age of paid news, advertorials, and display ads on blogs, we are proudly ad-free. Nothing would make us happier to know that we are read and loved by South Asian communities. Nothing, that is, apart from knowing that we are read and loved by all communities and individuals, including aliens on currently unidentified planets. We invite you to join in our conversations.
You can support Southern Crossings by subscribing to our blog, liking our Facebook page, liking and commenting on our Facebook posts, favouriting our Tweets, commenting on our blog posts, and sharing, sharing, sharing our work as much as you can. So, we humbly ask, please do the needful.