This article offers to the consideration of readers a number of site-specific vignettes that highlight the ways in which the experience of blackness--as different from the fact of blackness--may take different forms depending on the moment, the socio-cultural setting, the history, and the existential context in which it occurs. It asks about the wisdom of promoting ideas about global blackness that do not at the same time examine the political economy that explains the globalizing of blackness nor the deleterious legacy of Western discourse that construed people of African descent as a homogeneous branch of the human famly. The article invites reflection on the need to study the black experience internationally without a preordained narrative of racial self-affirmation, warning that the expectation that blacks will articulate their racial identity everywhere in the same way may result in the misrecognition an ensuing neglect of seminal chapters of the black experience.
Silvio Torres-Saillant; One and Divisible: Meditations on Global Blackness. Small Axe 1 July 2009; 13 (2): 4–25. doi: https://doi.org/10.1215/07990537-3697226
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