Navigating the African DiasporaThe Anthropology of Invisibility

Navigating the African DiasporaThe Anthropology of Invisibility

Donald Martin Carter

Print publication date: 2015

ISBN: 9780816647774

Publisher: University of Minnesota Press

Abstract

Investigating how the fraught political economy of migration impacts people around the world, this book raises important issues about contemporary African diasporic movements. Developing the notion of the anthropology of invisibility, it explores the trope of navigation in social theory intent on understanding the lived experiences of transnational migrants. The book examines invisibility in its various forms, from social rejection and residential segregation to war memorials and the inability of some groups to represent themselves through popular culture, scholarship, or art. The pervasiveness of invisibility is not limited to symbolic actions, the book shows, but may have dramatic and at times catastrophic consequences for people subjected to its force. The geographic span of this analysis is global, encompassing Senegalese Muslims in Italy and the United States and concluding with practical questions about the future of European societies. The book also considers both contemporary and historical constellations of displacement, from Darfurian refugees to French West African colonial soldiers.