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Caribbean SpacesEscapes from Twilight Zones$
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Carole Boyce Davies

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780252038020

Published to Illinois Scholarship Online: April 2017

DOI: 10.5406/illinois/9780252038020.001.0001

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Middle Pasages

Middle Pasages

Movable Borders and Ocean-Air Space Mobility

(p.85) 5 Middle Pasages
Caribbean Spaces

Carole Boyce Davies

University of Illinois Press

This chapter explores the concept of the Middle Passage, which has attained iconic significance in African diaspora discourses. The concept refers to the transportation of numerous Africans across the Atlantic; difficult and pain-filled journeys across ocean space; dismemberment referring to the separation from their families and kin groups; the economic trade and exchange in goods in which Africans were the capital, commodities, or source of exchange and garnering of wealth for others; deterritorialization, the separation from one's own native geography or familiar landmarks, and the parallel disenfranchisement of Africans in new locations; the necessary constitution of new identities in passage and on and after arrival. However, the Middle Passage has also become a historical marker in space and time, for some an aesthetic, for many an evocative body memory in terms of confinement to limited spaces, but absolutely a break between different ways of being in the world.

Keywords:   Middle Passage, Caribbean culture, African diaspora, deterritorialization, family separation

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