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The African Diaspora in the Indian Ocean

Over the course of nearly 20 centuries, millions of East Africans crossed the Indian Ocean and its several seas and adjoining bodies of water in their journey to distant lands, from Arabia and Iraq to India and Sri Lanka. Called Kaffir, Siddi, Habshi, or Zanji, these men, women and children from Sudan in the north to Mozambique in the south Africanized the Indian Ocean world and helped shape the societies they entered and made their own. Free or enslaved, soldiers, servants, sailors, merchants, mystics, musicians, commanders, nurses, or founders of dynasties, they contributed their cultures, talents, skills and labor to their new world, as millions of their descendants continue to do. Yet, their heroic odyssey remains little known. The African Diaspora in the Indian Ocean World traces a truly unique and fascinating story of struggles and achievements across a variety of societies, cultures, religions, languages and times.
posted by infini on Feb 6, 2014 - 9 comments

22, Female, Kottayam

The Malayali Nurse on the Moon
She is everywhere, so it becomes difficult to see her. At some point you have to squint to see past the chimera that is the Malayali nurse. You have to ask why even Libya — broken, bullet-scarred and currently in possession of 14 psychiatrists for the whole nation — a better choice than any place in India? You have to ask why she chooses nursing at all. And if we don’t see her as a martyr to the family coffers, who is the woman emerging out of the smoke then?

posted by infini on Jul 2, 2013 - 13 comments

Making a New Home in St. Louis

The Bosnian Resettlement, 20 years later. (St. Louis Post-Dispatch) Twenty years after St. Louis became the center of one of the largest refugee relocation efforts in the nation’s history, Bosnian refugees have remade this neighborhood at Gravois Avenue and Morganford Road into a thriving business district, with restaurants, bars, markets and a newspaper.
posted by notsnot on Jun 23, 2013 - 17 comments

The Top 10 Fears of African Diaspora About Africa

They wash dishes in restaurants, clean toilets and look after elderly incontinent people in the West. That makes the majority of the 30 million who have emigrated from Africa. Some are much luckier, they work in subaltern management positions in corporate America or in public institution in Europe. Few are real stars, successful with high pay and social status. Regardless of their current fate, they all share one thing in common: most of them want to return to Africa. The recent medias’ drumbeat about “Africa is Rising” is making them restless and hopeful because most of them have quite a petty life in the West. They are constantly harassed by the state police, crushed by daily racism from their neighbors and strangers, economically and politically isolated, and with very little hope for a near-future improvement. Unfortunately their dream to return home is painfully held back by deep fears and unanswered questions. Here are the top 10 fears of the African diaspora about Africa, and also the top 10 questions most of them are confronted with.
posted by infini on Apr 28, 2013 - 20 comments

The Mazel of the Irish

"[The Loyal Yiddish Sons of Erin]'s biggest event was the annual Erev St. Patrick's Day Banquet. It was a formal gala at the Americana Hotel, complete with a big band, kosher corned beef and green bagels." American-Irish-Jews still celebrate St. Patrick's Day: “It’s an American-Irish holiday, surely not Jewish. It has nothing to do with Jewish people. But I’m Irish, and I have a feeling for it.” [more inside]
posted by ChuraChura on Mar 17, 2013 - 36 comments

Nollywood Worldwide: streaming Nigerian films

The Nigerian film industry known as Nollywood started humbly about 20 years ago. Nollywood movies were shot as cheaply and as quickly as possible, then released straight to VHS. The majority of Nollywood films are still sold offline, in outdoor markets from wheelbarrows or by the roadside from street vendors. In the early 2000s, Nollywood distribution shifted from VHS to discs — and now, the movies are also beginning to stream online. iROKO, one of the first companies to take Nigerian films online, is carefully tracking the viewing patterns of its growing audience. While Nigerian internet access is often subpar, streaming services are catering to the international diaspora. iROKOtv is a hub for streaming movies, with plenty of free movies alongside movies available as part of monthly membership. Their website grew out of their YouTube channel, which had over 400 movies online in 2011, though recently they are mainly posting trailers. If you're not sure which movies to see, Nollywood Forever has plenty of reviews, and Nollywood.com has a ton of African movie trailers.
posted by filthy light thief on Feb 16, 2013 - 19 comments

*note: I'm not sure what this asterisk is for

When we started Diaspora two years ago, the project kicked off with amazing reception and support from people that believed in our ultimate goal: giving users ownership over their data. ... Today, the network has grown into thousands of people using our software in hundreds of installations across the web. There are hundreds of pods that have been created by community members, and it has become one of the biggest Github projects to date. ... Today, we are giving control of Diaspora to the community.
Diaspora*, the open social network, is now owned by its user base. [more inside]
posted by rebent on Aug 28, 2012 - 44 comments

An African in Guangzhou

A unique urban ecology prompts a new look at globalization. Japanese architect Naohiko Hino visited Guangzhou's 'Africatown' after being inspired by an article in Le Monde Diplomatique* and wrote his view on the unique model of globalization he saw in the heart of China's manufacturing powerhouse. [more inside]
posted by infini on Jan 15, 2012 - 19 comments

I AM

I Am tells the stories of 36 Sri Lankan elders, about their lives and work, and their connections to their hometown. ... With the movement of people away from their hometowns, particularly from Jaffna and Galle, I also spoke to the so called 'internal diaspora', about their longing for their hometowns and their sense of belonging to their adoptive homes."
posted by chunking express on Jan 6, 2012 - 3 comments

RIP Ilya Zhitomirskiy

Ilya Zhitomirskiy, co-founder of Diaspora* died at 22 on Saturday. [more inside]
posted by facehugger on Nov 17, 2011 - 32 comments

Typical pre-alpha bugginess, or embarrassing beginner mistakes?

Late yesterday the much-hyped "privacy aware, personally controlled" Diaspora social network platform (discussed previously) published its open-source developer release. "Feel free to try to get it running on your machines and use it," the team urged, "but we give no guarantees. We know there are security holes and bugs, and your data is not yet fully exportable." The Register's initial report is less than rosy: Code for open-source Facebook littered with landmines
posted by The Winsome Parker Lewis on Sep 17, 2010 - 58 comments

Diaspora: An Open Source Facebook

Diaspora: open-source Facebook. [more inside]
posted by WCityMike on May 12, 2010 - 145 comments

I'm so occupied these days

Soup Over Bethlehem - The mloukhieh in the soup bowl represents the shared national heritage and the meal itself becomes a gastronomic anchoring of a Palestinian identity in eternal flux. [via]
posted by tellurian on Apr 2, 2009 - 17 comments

The African-American Migration Experience

In Motion: The African-American Migration Experience is organized around thirteen defining migrations that have formed and transformed African America and the nation. From The New York Public Library, Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture [prev], more than 16,500 pages of text, 8,300 illustrations, and 60+ maps. [more inside]
posted by netbros on Mar 15, 2009 - 3 comments

Birthright Israel

Birthright Israel, funded by the Israeli government and Jewish philanthropists, provides free all-inclusive 10-day trips to Israel for Jewish young adults. The program's goal is to promote Israel along with general Jewish unity and engagement. The blog Jewlicious has a category about these trips. (Scroll down past many promotional entries for the interesting stuff.) Some question its efficacy and results, while some Jews subvert the program. The trips end with a "Mega Rally" featuring entertainment, giant inflatable Stars of David, and speeches by dignitaries including PM Ehud Olmert. Here is video coverage (FLV) of the most recent rally. There is also a satirical Something Awful report.
posted by TheOnlyCoolTim on Jun 26, 2008 - 43 comments

Baghdad Leaving

Riverbend and her family decided to leave Iraq.
posted by growabrain on Apr 27, 2007 - 73 comments

Multiplicity along the Silk Road

Chinese Jews and the Silk Road. Maps. [more inside]
posted by nickyskye on Jul 25, 2006 - 26 comments

Jews in Cuba

Remembrance on the Island: The enduring legacy of the Jewish-Cuban diaspora, and the existence of the 1,500 Jews that still remain in Cuba.
posted by naxosaxur on Feb 16, 2006 - 12 comments

The Return of Jerry Moses and the Jewish Migration to Shanghai

"Ala ZongGoNin! Ala YouTaNin!". Jerry Moses last walked on Gaoyang Road in 1947. It was called Chaoufoong Road then, and it was home to many of the 18,000 European Jewish refugees who had sought refuge from Nazi Germany in Shanghai's Hongkew District (today known as Hongkou) during the run-up to World War II. He casts his gaze at the lane, his brow loosens and he begins to nod. "This is it, this is it," he says softly. "I know this is it." One week into his first visit to Shanghai in almost 60 years, Moses has found his third home in an exile that lasted from 1941 to 1947. He strides into the space, his manner now much closer to that of the 12-year-old boy who had left than the 70-year-old man who has returned. More inside.
posted by matteo on Jan 19, 2006 - 13 comments

Sephardim

Who are the Sephardim? provides a short history of Sephardic Jews. The Ladino language website has a more complete introduction to Ladino, the Judeo-Spanish language. Included are a brief descriptive grammar, stanzas from Joseph the Wise, a long Ladino poem, and a translation of The Story of Gerineldo, a folktale. There are very good primary sources at the Medieval Sourcebook, and a Yahoo Ladino discussion group. This essay about the interactions between Moorish and Jewish cultures and their collective effect on European culture seems quite good (and is in Spanish). See also this Spanish-language article about exploring Ladino. There are more good Spanish-language resources on Sephardic history here.
posted by OmieWise on Sep 26, 2005 - 16 comments

National Geographic Migration Study Rouses Indigenous Concern

National Geographic Migration Study Rouses Indigenous Concern. What do indigenous DNA donors have to gain from their involvement in the Genographic Project? As a First Worlder, I signed up, I swabbed, my genes are being shuttled through the Genographic study as we speak. Can't wait to see the results. And I'm not particularly paranoid, obviously, that the results will be used to harm anyone. But this article did make me curious as to exactly how the study could possibly benefit indigenous peoples. Will it be yet another strike against their origin stories? Will it be like a coke bottle dropping from the sky? Will it, instead, inspire non-indigenous peoples to treat their indigenous cousins with more respect?
posted by CrunchyGods on Sep 22, 2005 - 46 comments

chutney music

Chutney Music :"For these people, Chutney was more than just music (.asf files), it was their life, it was their culture. For a people twice removed from their native land, Chutney was their connection to the traditions they might have otherwise never known." [via]
posted by dhruva on May 29, 2005 - 6 comments

Chinese Diaspora

Chinese Heritage of Australian Federation. A page full of stories of the Chinese community in Australia around 1900. 'At this time there were almost 35,000 Chinese in the Australian colonies. Each of these individuals to varying degrees has played a role in the development of Australia. This page explores the lives of some of these people - both ordinary and famous. '
Related :- the Ng Shing Gung in San Jose; the Mai Wah Society and the Asian heritage of Butte, Montana (old building and the Tong Wars); the Wing Luke Asian Museum, Seattle; a Chinese joss house in Darwin; Chinatown Melbourne (history, today, virtual tour); Chinatown Sydney (community and culture); Yema-po, once a Chinese labourers' work camp in California.
posted by plep on Aug 7, 2003 - 11 comments

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