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“Reversing Sail: A History of the African Diaspora” by Michael Gomez

student assignement


Chapter Eight – Movement People

Gomez states in Chapter 8’s opening paragraph:

Movement has long been a principal characteristic of the African Diaspora. The period from 1945 to 1968 was an important era of “movement,” a term that . . . came to signify organized campaigns to reverse the legacies of slavery and discrimination  . . . the continuing quest for the full free. (Page 193)

  1. (ALL)  Identify the “new conditions for freedom’s struggle” created during the years 1945 to 1968.
  2. Identify/discuss developments in the United States. (political, organizations, leadership)
  3. Identify/discuss developments in the Caribbean, Latin America and Europe.
  4. How did black literature and scholarship foster connections within the African Diaspora?
  5. How did music and dance facilitate interconnections in the African Diaspora?
  6. What role has sports played in fostering cultural interactions among peoples of the African Diaspora?
  7. (ALL)  Gomez speaks of “the contemporary African Diaspora.”  What do you think he means by this?


“Since the 1960s, reconnections with Africa and within the African Diaspora have intensified. Given the ongoing impoverishment of many in Africa and the Diaspora, such interrelations require deeper and more practical meaning if they are to play a significant role in ending the despair. The incredible beauty and creativity of the African Diaspora, combined with its unbelievable suffering and disadvantage, are contradictions awaiting resolution.” (Page 219)