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To Turn the Whole World OverBlack Women and Internationalism$
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Keisha N. Blain and Tiffany M. Gill

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9780252042317

Published to Illinois Scholarship Online: September 2019

DOI: 10.5622/illinois/9780252042317.001.0001

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“Distant Ties”

“Distant Ties”

May Ayim’s Transnational Solidarity and Activism

Chapter:
(p.74) Chapter 4 “Distant Ties”
Source:
To Turn the Whole World Over
Author(s):

Tiffany N. Florvil

Publisher:
University of Illinois Press
DOI:10.5622/illinois/9780252042317.003.0005

By attending conferences, workshops, and symposia in London, New York, Minnesota, and Accra, May Ayim, an Afro-German writer and activist, engaged in political activism internationally. Through these events, Ayim confronted diverse forms of inequality. Yet she also cultivated strong activist ties in Germany. With the support of Afro-Caribbean feminist and writer Audre Lorde, Ayim helped to usher in the Afro-German movement of the 1980s and 1990s. She also cofounded the organization the Initiative of Black Germans (Initiative Schwarze Deutsche, ISD). Motivated by her diasporic politics and international connections, Ayim employed her literary work as a form of activism to obtain social visibility and equality for herself, Afro-Germans, and other people of color. This essay provides one of the first sustained accounts on Ayim’s global activism.

Keywords:   Germany, May Ayim, Identity, Inequality, Feminism, Audre Lorde, Poetry, Writing, activism

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