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Africa in EuropeStudies in Transnational Practice in the Long Twentieth Century$
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Eve Rosenhaft and Robbie Aitken

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9781846318474

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: May 2014

DOI: 10.5949/liverpool/9781846318474.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM LIVERPOOL SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.liverpool.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Liverpool University Press, 2019. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in LSO for personal use.date: 14 October 2019

Middle Passage Blackness and its Diasporic Discontents: The Case for a Post-War Epistemology

Middle Passage Blackness and its Diasporic Discontents: The Case for a Post-War Epistemology

Chapter:
(p.217) Chapter 12 Middle Passage Blackness and its Diasporic Discontents: The Case for a Post-War Epistemology
Source:
Africa in Europe
Author(s):

Michelle M. Wright

Publisher:
Liverpool University Press
DOI:10.5949/liverpool/9781846318474.003.0012

This chapter proposes a new framework for understanding the African diaspora. It rejects the ‘Middle Passage Epistemology’, which dictates that diaspora studies are dominated by the African-American experience as shaped by transatlantic slavery. As an alternative, it proposes a ‘Post-War Epistemology’ that proceeds from a reading of World War Two as a transnational event that mobilised black people all over the world. Reading forward and backward from the War allows us to give adequate attention to a wider range of historical actors, including people of different genders and displaced or mobilised Africans and Afro-Caribbeans. It also brings into focus new kinds of connections among black people, a ‘horizontal diaspora’ that rests on elective affinities – sexual and cultural as well as political. The chapter draws on a range of literary and historical texts.

Keywords:   diaspora, Middle Passage, literature, World War Two, gender

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