Parkchester is an area that is full of diversity with Muslim, Christianity, and many other religious and diverse cultural people from all over the world. Here, one can find people from Latin America, Asian countries like Bangladesh, India, Pakistan, Middle Eastern countries, and including many countries also from Africa. The restaurants and the grocery stores are full of diverse cultural food. It is rare that one cannot find their cultural food or spices here.
An area or the community that I live since I moved to the U.S. in 2016 from Bangladesh. I find this place very similar again dissimilar to my home country. Someway similar because I find the same racial people like me – the Bengali community. This community has existed even before I moved here, and now it’s growing very fast. Somehow it’s dissimilar as I find healthcare, education, a form of society, and the system of government very unlike where I lived before. It’s much developed and full of opportunities for one to thrive. This community is full of diversity as I always find it exciting to meet new people. And the place is Parkchester – in the Bronx. In Parkchester, the Bangladeshis community is largely expanding as well as I could also say the Muslim community too. The place I live in includes a large mosque, which is the largest mosque in the Bronx – The Parkchester Jame Masjid depicted below. The mosque illustrates the fact how large the Muslim community is expanding in this area.
Figure 1: Parkchester Mosque
The Bengali community in Parkchester is expanding as well, as you could see the various stores that illustrate this particular culture. The picture depicted below explains by the sign of halal food that the Muslim community is united here.
Figure 2: A Bengali Muslim Grocery Store
Figure 3: White Plains Road, Parkchester
Figure 4: Bengali Shop
The picture above shows the store has Bengali clothes, and the writing the included in Bengali as the store title.
Figure 5: Bengali Hair Salon
In figure 5, in the Bengali alphabet, it was written that it is a hair salon for men and children, and the prices are written in English. Perhaps, the targeted audience is Bengali families especially men.
Figure 6: Art that represents Bangladesh.
All of the pictures provided have a color pattern of the color green, that represents the flag of Bangladesh, which is combined with red and green. Most of the pictures also include the color red, with green to demonstrate the sign of the Bengali community’s existence. They also include the Bengali alphabet so the Bengali people can easily identify the stores where they can find the necessary cultural products. In figure 1, the Mosque includes the color green, and the same color could be found in all other figures including 4, 5, 6, 7, and 8. They all include this pattern to show the Bangladeshi culture.
Figure 7: Money transfer store owned by Bengali owner.
Figure 8: Bengali traditional cloth store.
At figure 4, 5, and 9 specifically shows the Bengali calligraphy or the alphabet to show the culture they represent and the cultural products they sell. In figure 8, it shows the saree that Bengali women wear in our home country as everyday clothing. It is a type of long garment that women wear to cover their whole body. Some may find it similar to Indian and Pakistani garments, as these countries were historically connected. As a traditional cloth, unlike pants and t-shirts, in Bangladesh men wear dresses like long garments that cover their body till the knees and sweatpants like pants. These are all can be distinguished in figure 8.
Figure 9: Bengali money transfer store.
Figure 10: Area called Bangla Bazar, which means Bengali markets.
All of the figures above represent how this area is largely occupied by Bangladeshi people. This area is called Starling, and another world also called Bangla Bazar, which means Bangla Market, or that Bangladeshi people have many businesses in this area. In this particular space, people can find every type of Bangladeshi material like spices, clothes, or any other bengali necessities. By the time this Bengali area has been expanded. During 2016, it was not as busy as it is now, as it keeps expanding as more Bengali immigrants come to the U.S. By now, Bengali people not only have businesses, but many Bengalis are now in high official jobs including politics and other wall street businesses. Also, the mosque was depicted above represents the Bengali Muslim community. Every time in Eid prayer when every Bengali Muslim comes together for Eid prayer there is not enough space for everyone to fit in the mosque. Therefore many people end up praying on the street beside the mosque. This is a huge representation of how Bengali communities have a large unity to live together in the area of Bronx. In conclusion, it was clearly distinguished that Parkchester is the area where most Bengali people live, and the community is expanding by the time.