Navigating the African Diaspora
The Anthropology of Invisibility
Publication Year: 2010
Published by: University of Minnesota Press
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Title Page, Copyright
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Th e location of my anthropological imagination began in Oakland, California, where I spent my childhood in the peculiar mix of social exclusion, racism, and normal life that the city oﬀ ered. One must acknowledge one’s arrivals and departures, setting in this manner the basic structure of the trope of the voyage; for me it was a particular tra-...
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Th is project is the result of an itinerant scholar traveling the byways of academic life. Th e idea for this book came to me as I attempted to plow through the rapidly growing literature on diaspora and also through my exploration of the world that Senegalese migrants and others intro-duced me to in Turin, Italy. Anthropology is somewhat like a game of ...
Introduction: The Anthropology of Invisibility
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...locate themselves, they have to find the “out there” by entering Journeys are an active engagement with the world, and are at the very least transformative and irreversible. Journeys have a sense of agency that we must keep alive through our explorations. Let me paraphrase the begin-ning of an old tale. It is a song of diaspora and concerns the people of ...
1 A Nonracial Education: On Navigating Diaspora, Anti-Black Caricature, and Anthropology
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...it that is inessential to what some reader, with more or less authority, will regard as an adequate description. On analysis, Autobiography lurks in the background of almost every anthropological enterprise. Th is is a “social fact” one oft en discovers by chance. For me, it was in the odd inherited carpet in the apartment of an African/European ...
2 Remembering Khartoum and Other Tales of Displacement
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Our view of the passage of time influences the value we attach points of reference are not years counted serially, but the events “Khartoum,” it is Khartoum which is regarded as an agent, the If we were to confi gure the architecture of contemporary anthropology, the resulting structure might reveal the explorations of experience, mate-...
3 The Inexhaustible Sense of Exile: Other Cultures in the Photographic Imaginary
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The Famished Road , a novel by Ben Okri, opens with the meditations of a spirit child contemplating whether to continue life in the mundane world or surrender and returning to the ethereal realm. In a phrase that speaks to the underlying tension within diasporic experience, Okri writes, “To be born is to come into the world weighed down with strange gift s of the soul, with enigmas and an inextinguishable sense of exile” (1992, 5). ...
4 Crossing Modernity: The Journey from Imperial to Diasporic Nostalgia
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...“In presenting culture as a subject for analysis and critique,” anthropolo-gist Renato Rosaldo once wrote, “the ethnographic perspective develops an interplay between making the familiar strange and the strange famil-iar” (1989, 39). Presenting culture—whatever we might imagine these days the concept of culture to be—it seems to me is no longer an activity ...
5 Sites of Erasure: Black Prisoners and the Poetry of Léopold Sédar Senghor
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If I have so often cited Fanon, it is because more dramatically and decisively than anyone, I believe, he expresses the immense In this chapter and chapter 6, I present a meditation on the lives and work of two Senegalese scholars, politicians, fi lmmakers, and former colonial soldiers: the late Léopold Sédar Senghor, former president of Senegal, and ...
6 Comrade Storyteller: Diasporic Encounters in the Cinema of Ousmane Sembene
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...partially to escape its implacable sequence. The ability to with-draw the appearance of the moment and preserve it from time’s deliquescence looms large in the history of our fascination with White however has the strange property of directing our atten-itself as a color. For evidence of this we need look no further ...
7 Travel Warnings: Observations of Voyages Real and Imagined
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Voyagers, navigators, and travelers of all sorts were enjoined to observe the inclination of the dipping needle; to note the ebbs plans of coasts, recording promontories, rocks, and shoals, with the character of the ocean’s bottom; changes of wind and weather at all hours (especially trade hurricanes, waterspouts, and the ...
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About the Author
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... Donald Martin Carter is a professor of Africana studies at Hamilton College. He is the author of States of Grace: Senegalese in Italy and the ...
Page Count: 328
Publication Year: 2010