“Where Are You From?”: Growing Up African-Canadian in Vancouver

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University of Toronto Press, Dec 12, 2019 - Africans - 216 pages

Metro Vancouver is a diverse city where half the residents identify as people of colour, but only one percent of the population is racialized as Black. In this context, African-Canadians are both hyper-visible as Black, and invisible as distinct communities. Informed by feminist and critical race theories, and based on interviews with women and men who grew up in Vancouver, "Where Are You From?" recounts the unique experience of growing up in a place where the second generation seldom sees other people who look like them, and yet are inundated with popular representations of Blackness from the United States.

This study explores how the second generation in Vancouver redefine their African identities to distinguish themselves from African-Americans, while continuing to experience considerable everyday racism that challenges belonging as Canadians. As a result, some members of the second generation reject, and others strongly assert, a Canadian identity.

 

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Contents

1 Introduction
3
2 Imagined Communities Discourses of Blackness and the New African Diaspora in Vancouver
15
Remembering Migration and Early Childhood
41
Navigating Adolescence
71
Adult Friendships and Romantic Relationships
94
Education and Career Goals
109
Navigating Public Spaces
124
Belonging and Identity
150
Race Gender Sexuality and Place
175
References
185
Index
201
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About the author (2019)

Gillian Creese is the associate dean of Arts, Faculty & Equity, and professor in the Department of Sociology and the Institute for Gender, Race, Sexuality and Social Justice at the University of British Columbia.

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