At the turn of the twentieth century, terms like globalization, transnationalism, and diaspora heralded the increasing interconnectedness of cultures, nations, and politics. While such global networks continue to grow at a rapid rate, nationalist rhetoric and politics have also become more salient as some decry diversity, the threat of "open" borders, and the impacts of capitalist expansion under globalization. At a time when globalization has become a buzzword for the twenty-first century, how can there be both the proliferation of global cultures and increasing rhetoric of protectionist nationalism? I explore how and why diaspora has become salient particularly in an age where nations have been challenged and transformed under globalized capitalism. First, I trace the rise of hegemonic nationalism, its use in legitimizing racial and gendered differences under colonialism, and how its consequent displacements and marginalization led, for some, to claims of diaspora. I then suggest that the racialized Black migrant diaspora may serve as an example of how race and nationalism inform the creation of diaspora and how resistance can emerge across shared experiences of exclusion on this basis. I argue that diaspora has reemerged as one response to the politics of hypernationalism which has again sought to consolidate capital and wealth in an era of global capitalism. I conclude that Black diaspora may become a means for challenging nationalism through the dismantlement of its racial origins.


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pp. 209-230
Launched on MUSE
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