Panel 6: Black Diaspora and
Silke Hackenesch (JFK Institut, FU Berlin)
Christina Oppel, (Englisches Seminar, WWU Münster)
This workshop presents some of the theoretical premises the interdisciplinary and transnational Young Scholars Network “Black Diaspora and Germany” (English Seminar, University of Münster) intends to contribute to the field of German centered Black Diaspora Studies. Merging Afro-German and African American-German perspectives, this interdisciplinary network intends to initiate a fruitful dialogue between postcolonial discourses which have so far been lead separately in intersecting disciplines. The first workshop offers a discussion forum for present and future members of this network under construction. In the second workshop (Papers 2-4 are going to take place on the Friday session), three network participants will present their work inside the network at the intersections of Black Diaspora and (German) Critical Whiteness Studies. In the former panel, key questions and problems will be addressed which the network faces in the contested space of the Black diaspora: issues of representation, the participants’ positionality and the power and authority to define. As the network works against tendencies toward an Americanist “hegemony” in Black diaspora studies institutional and content –related ways will be sought to counterbalance this recent tendency in order to establish a more fruitful dialogue among scholars of Afro German and African American Studies. In order to establish a setting in which to address these pertinent questions and to stimulate an exchange of ongoing projects from a variety of perspectives, we seek to establish a diverse, interdisciplinary group of scholars.
Paper 1: YSN Black Diaspora and
In recent years, scholarly work on
Paper 2: Dr. Eske Wollrad (Frauen- und Geschlechterstudien, Carl von Ossietzky Universität Oldenburg), „Changing Concepts in Constructing Race: Black Diaspora, “Critical Whiteness Studies” and the Black
On which historiographic frames of reference are US-American Critical Whiteness Studies and German research on Weißsein based and how do both fields of research relate to the fundamental historic eras of slavery and colonialism? Although critical explorations of both Whiteness and Weißsein assume an antiracist stance, their propensity to reproduce and revitalize White amnesia regarding White terror of slavery and colonialism cannot be ignored. Using the Black Atlantic as hermeneutical key, Eske Wollrad will delineate hegemonic aspects of Whiteness studies and their implications, that is, the negation of Black diasporic knowledge productions.
Paper 3: Christina Oppel (Englisches Seminar, Westfälische Wilhelms-Universität Münster, “African Americans,
Investigating African American accounts of
Paper 4: Frank Mehring (John F. Kennedy Institute, Abt. Kultur, Freie Universität
Frank Mehring will focus on questions of authenticity and performance by addressing transcultural confrontations between the Afro-German experience and imagined constructions of African American performance culture. Musical theater and HipHop have established heterotopic spaces in the sense of Michel Foucault to negotiate blackness as a symbol of vitality and primitivist modernity. Blackface minstrelsy has largely been associated with American Vaudeville and