Diasporic Africa

A Reader

317 pages

January, 2006

ISBN: 9780814731666



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Michael Gomez is professor of history and Middle Eastern and Islamic studies at New York University. He is the author of Exchanging Our Country Marks: The Transformation of African Identities in the Colonial and Antebellum South.

All books by Michael A. Gomez

Diasporic Africa presents the most recent research on the history and experiences of people of African descent outside of the African continent. By incorporating Europe and North Africa as well as North America, Latin America, and the Caribbean, this reader shifts the discourse on the African diaspora away from its focus solely on the Americas, underscoring the fact that much of the movement of people of African descent took place in Old World contexts. This broader view allows for a more comprehensive approach to the study of the African diaspora.

The volume provides an overview of African diaspora studies and features as a major concern a rigorous interrogation of "identity." Other primary themes include contributions to western civilization, from religion, music, and sports to agricultural production and medicine, as well as the way in which our understanding of the African diaspora fits into larger studies of transnational phenomena.


  • “These 13 well-written scholarly essays are an eclectic compilation covering disparate topics, places, and time periods relating to the African Diaspora. . . . Recommended.”


  • “Many of the essays included in this volume are excellent, and all of them raise issues of interest.”

    African Affairs

  • “Makes a fine introduction to recent scholarship on the African Diaspora, from the slave trade and the geographic dispersal of African people, to the modern conceptualization of the Diaspora as an imagined homeland.”

    International Journal of African Historical Studies

  • “Thus this book will be fruitful for ongoing debates on Diaspora and transnationalism and is indispensable for anyone interested in African Diaspora studies.”

    Journal of African History

  • “This sparkling mosaic of thought from the African Diaspora redraws the boundaries of relevant scholarship to the benefit of a wide array of students and scholars. A greatly needed volume.”

    —Sterling Stuckey, Presidential Chair and Distinguished Professor Emeritus of History, University of California at Riverside