Interview with Guyanese-American journalist Gaiutra Bahadur: DNA
In her book Coolie Woman, Guyanese-American journalist Gaiutra Bahadur traces the history of her great-grandmother Sujaria and a quarter of a million women like her who left India in the mid-1800s as indentured labour. From the treacherous sea voyage to British Guiana to the challenges faced by these “coolie” women, Bahadur paints a vivid picture. In a free-wheeling chat, Bahadur tells Amrita Madhukalya how the book is part personal history and part documentation. Edited excerpts of the interview:
What led you to write Coolie Woman? Were you, in a way, tracing your own personal history through your great-grandmother’s story?