Exploring the history and experiences of mixed heritage persons and inter-racial relationships across the world


The countries to be covered on this continent are India, Goa in particular, the Philippines and Indonesia.
The Asian colonial era really began in 1502 when the Portuguese established the first European trading centre at Kollam, Kerala.   In 1510 Afonso de Albuquerque conquered Goa and used that city as Portugal's stepping stone to the Far East when in April with a force of seventeen or eighteen ships he conquered Malacca, in present day Malaysia.  It became a strategic base for further expansion in the East Indies - South East Asia.  In Goa, Albuquerque inaugurated the policy of marrying Portuguese soldiers and sailors with local girls, a policy that appears to have been carried on in Malacca and other Portuguese territories in Asia.

Inter-Racial Family Relaxing On A Large BedIn Malaysia, a distinct social group known as Kristang was originally descendants of Portuguese and Malaccan but the mix is even pronounced yet because further mixing with Indian and Chinese has occurred.   Malaysia is a truly multi-ethnic country, with native Malays making up the majority but with some 30% of Malaysians of Chinese descent and those of Indian descent comprising about 8%.

Between 1602 and 1796 the Dutch East India Company sent almost a million Europeans, not all Dutch, to work in the Asia mainly to the Dutch East Indies which eventually expanded to become Indonesia.  Most of these Europeans were male and the Dutch followed the Portuguese example by encouraging the take-up of local wives.    In Sri Lanka in which they followed the Portuguese as colonisers, they contributed to the establishment of a distinct community of called the Burghers, descendants of mostly Portuguese, Dutch, German and British colonists and local women.  The Burghers make up some about 0.2% of the Sri Lanka's population.

Despite the Dutch, the Portuguese influence was felt all over the Indian sub-continent and the East Indies.  Their and the Dutch's inter-racial policies saw a number of distinct mestiço (Dutch: Mesties) , mixed race, populations throughout that part of the world.  The Topasses (Tupasses, Topas, Topaz) were a group of who claimed Portuguese ancestry or were natives who had taken up Portuguese culture and language. Topasses were found in such places as Goa, Malacca and Batavia. However, they were particularly regarded as an ethnically mixed Portuguese group that dominated politics on Timor and appear either totally assimilated into the Timor community or now regarded as Indos.

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