Essay on African Diaspora

1818 Words Nov 20th, 2015 8 Pages
Part 1:
Question one is what is the African diaspora? (Who should be considered in the African diaspora? How is this like the black Atlantic and how is it different?). Students should use the Colin Palmer piece to answer this question.

In its most recognizable form, the African diaspora refers to the many cultures and societies abroad that exist throughout the world as the result of the historic movement, mostly forced, of native Africans to other parts of the globe. Most specifically, the African diaspora is the blanket term used to represent a confluence of events that led to the forced displacement of millions of innocent people. The term first originated in the 1950s and initial studies focused on the “dispersal of people of
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No diasporic community manifests all of these characteristics or shares with the same intensity an identity with its scattered ancestral kin. In many respects, diasporas are not actual but imaginary and symbolic communities and political constructs; it is we who often call them into being.” (Palmer)

It is essential to note that the term African Diaspora does not describe any single event, group of people or set of customs. It represents a current state of being for many citizens of the world and provides context for understanding the social structures and intercultural relationships of the world we live in today. Collin Palmer provides great insight into the context of diaspora. He writes that there have been several movements, massive migrations of people, throughout history. There is no single “diasporic movement or monolithic diasporic community” to be studied, but rather a confluence of people, events and ideologies that span thousands of years, across every continent. Each period of movement, each diasporic stream, happened for different reasons. Palmer’s approach to the African Diaspora begins with a look nearly 100,000 years into the past. He identifies five major streams, with the first African diaspora that occurred as a
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