Black Germany: The Making and Unmaking of a Diaspora Community, 1884?1960

Overview

This groundbreaking history traces the development of Germany's black community, from its origins in colonial Africa to its decimation by the Nazis during World War II. Robbie Aitken and Eve Rosenhaft follow the careers of Africans arriving from the colonies, examining why and where they settled, their working lives and their political activities, and giving unprecedented attention to gender, sexuality and the challenges of 'mixed marriage'. Addressing the networks through which individuals constituted community,...

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Black Germany: The Making and Unmaking of a Diaspora Community, 1884-1960

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Overview

This groundbreaking history traces the development of Germany's black community, from its origins in colonial Africa to its decimation by the Nazis during World War II. Robbie Aitken and Eve Rosenhaft follow the careers of Africans arriving from the colonies, examining why and where they settled, their working lives and their political activities, and giving unprecedented attention to gender, sexuality and the challenges of 'mixed marriage'. Addressing the networks through which individuals constituted community, Aitken and Rosenhaft explore the ways in which these relationships spread beyond ties of kinship and birthplace to constitute communities as 'black'. The study also follows a number of its protagonists to France and back to Africa, providing new insights into the roots of Francophone black consciousness and postcolonial memory. Including an in-depth account of the impact of Nazism and its aftermath, this book offers a fresh critical perspective on narratives of 'race' in German history.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
'This is a very impressive book that provides fascinating information about the everyday lives of Africans in Germany and sheds new light on a hitherto unknown episode of twentieth-century history. It also makes a more general argument about race, community and Diaspora, based on painstaking archival research.' Andreas Eckert, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin

'With painstaking and imaginative research, Robbie Aitken and Eve Rosenhaft have reconstructed the lives of individual Africans across multiple colonial regimes, from the German Empire to the French League of Nations mandate, and multiple German regimes, from the Kaiserreich to the Third Reich. Black Germany makes an important and persuasive argument about the emergence of a black German community and identity from the intersection of specific African and German histories. It shows that becoming black – that is, self-consciously part of an international community defined by 'race' – intersects with more particular and local historical entanglements. This is an important work of transnational history.' Andrew Zimmerman, George Washington University

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781107041363
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Publication date: 9/30/2013
  • Pages: 393
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.80 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Robbie Aitken is a Senior Lecturer in Imperial History at Sheffield Hallam University.

Eve Rosenhaft is Professor of German Historical Studies at the University of Liverpool.

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Table of Contents

Introduction; 1. The first generation: from presence to community; 2. Should I stay and can I go? Status and mobility in the institutional net; 3. Settling down: marriage and family; 4. Surviving in Germany: work, welfare and community; 5. Problem men and exemplary women? Gender, class and 'race'; 6. Practising diaspora – politics 1918–33; 7. Under the shadow of national socialism; 8. Refuge France?; Epilogue.

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