Many Bangladeshis have a dual identity, a national one and cross-border ethnic pride. They share a rich Bengali heritage across the border in the neighbouring state of West Bengal, India. Bengal’s legendary culture has produced many poets, musicians, educators, including the 1908 Nobel Laureate for Literature, Rabindranath Tagore.
Ethnically, Bangladeshi’s may refer to themselves as Bengalis like their cousins across the border. In other instances, they are steadfastly Bangladeshi, Bengali-Muslims nationals who feel strongly about their identity as Muslims, and may want to distinguish themselves from Bengali Hindus of neighbouring India. Bangladeshi identity may also be invoked by people who are not ethnically Bengali. This is a small fraction of the population.
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