This study problematises the contribution of India’s school textbooks in students’ national identity constructions in an overseas school in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. The textbooks construct students’ national identity on the concepts of India’s secular democracy, colonial resistance and equal citizenship rights. Notwithstanding study participants’ ambivalent identification with these ideals, they mostly express confusing identities evincing religious tendencies, gendered beliefs towards women and antipathy for India’s neighbouring states. This entails implications for India’s national cohesion and students’ ability to live in harmony with other communities in the diasporic setting. It also poses risks to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), 2030.
- Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) textbooks
- democracy in India
- India’s national identity construction in schools
- religion and secularism in India