Brown Wealth is Shameless

A new generation of rich South Asians are showing off and living it up. Not everyone’s on board.

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Jaya Bhaduri, who plays the matriarch of a wealthy family in 'Rocky Aur Rani Kii Prem Kahani' (2023)

Sadaf Ahsan


October 27, 2023


7 min

“I have no sharam, and if you find my sharam, please don’t return it,” says Anisha Ramakrishna in the first season of reality television series Family Karma, about rich Indian Americans in Miami. 

What provokes such a declaration? That she wants it all: the career, the lifestyle, the wealth, and the man. It’s what she and her friends — the privileged products of a generation who became wealthy by immigrating to the U.S. and toiling away — all want. Either unemployed or semi-employed, these 20- and 30-somethings get to live the spoils in public, on social media, and on television — with, yes, no shame.

In the West, the idea of the American Dream and “making it” is imperative, especially for immigrants. But while the narrative used to be more about surviving, now it’s more about thriving. And though many are chuffed to see successful South Asians, others feel more uncomfortable with the sheer audacity of it all.

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