This article examines how African cultural politics, Arab-African identity, and the conceptual project of Third Worldism collide in the pages of the trilingual quarterly magazine Lotus: Afro-Asian Writings. I argue this collision of conceptual and material interpretations and translations of African identity and debates about the utility of African anticolonial cultural production effectively produces new strategies through which to navigate the Third Worldist project: not in spite of discord, but within it. The first issue of Afro-Asian Writings inadvertently stages a debate between Léopold Sédar Senghor and Youssef el-Sebai on the meaning of African identity across the trans-Saharan terrain in the post-Bandung era. This project thus engages a distinct theoretical emphasis on tension in order to retrieve underexplored and mistranslated dialogues and difficulties about the function and foundation of African cultures, Arab African participation in African literary movements, and the project of Third Worldism within the contemporary study of the African diaspora and the Global South.


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pp. 91-115
Launched on MUSE
Open Access
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