This investigation addresses the degree to which African diasporic writers might free the term travel from its etymology. Chancy is interested in how shifts in social class for descendents of those formerly termed “subaltern” have occasioned concomitant shifts in the understanding of space, landscape, and those who inhabit the sites of visitation. It is the author's hope that such an investigation will yield a compelling discursive reassessment of how we might rethink the role of “native informants” as cosmopolitans who, despite a fixed identity within a minority group denied social (i.e., class) mobility, can speak a consciousness freed from marginalization that remains, to varying degrees, part of the community of origin (an ethnic or “racial” group), even as the border crossings they effect provide them with purchase within the economy of a society that largely frustrates the possibilities of movement for the constituents of the larger community such urbane travelers represent.

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