Nydia A. Swaby, PhD student Centre for Gender Studies and early stage research fellow (CoHaB), Centre for Migration and Diaspora Studies, SOAS, University of London

Black British feminism, differentiation, and the dynamics of diaspora space

My research examines black British feminism as a set of ideologies, discourses, and practices that might be termed diasporic and seeks to theorize how ‘blackness’, the strategic hallmark of black British feminism, operates as a contingent sign under different social and political circumstances. Inspired by ethnographic material collected during two years of fieldwork in London, this paper examines ‘blackness’ as a social formation that is not solely or even primarily about relations of similarity, but more often and quite profoundly about the dynamics of difference. Drawing from a series of ethnographic exchanges that occurred before, during, and after an event that was billed as ‘black feminist’, I ask how diaspora space troubles articulations of what it means to be ‘black’ and illuminates gaps in the translation of ‘blackness’ in and between diasporic spaces.

Nydia A. Swaby is a PhD candidate at the Centre for Gender Studies and a Marie Curie ITN - CoHaB, Diasporic Constructions of Home and Belonging early stage research fellow at the Centre for Migration and Diaspora Studies at SOAS, University of London.

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