Marcus Garvey: The Remapping of Africa and Its Diaspora

By Lewis, Rupert | Critical Arts, December 2011 | Go to article overview

Marcus Garvey: The Remapping of Africa and Its Diaspora


Lewis, Rupert, Critical Arts


Abstract

This article takes up the challenge of the United Nations (UN) Resolution which designated 2011 the Year of African Descendents by remembering Marcus Garvey's impact on anti-colonial and nationalist movements in Africa, which led to political freedom and the remapping of Africa and its diaspora. This solidarity was forged through the dissemination of Garvey's writings, as well as the establishment of branches of the Universal Negro Improvement Association and African Communities League (UNIA) in West and southern Africa, especially South Africa. This solidarity between Africans on the continent and African descendants in the diaspora laid the foundation for modern Pan-Africanism and African Nationalism. Focus is given to Garvey's thought and his solidarity with Sol Plaatje, an early leader of the African National Congress.

Keywords: African National Congress, Kwame Nkrumah, Marcus Garvey, Sol Plaatje, Universal Negro Improvement Association and African Communities League (UNIA)

Introduction

The imperial remapping of the world over the past half a millennium was structured on very profitable economic systems undergirded by political, cultural and racial systems that shored up hegemonic power and gave legitimacy to the 20th-century global order of empire and racial oppression. Racial oppression created apartheid in South Africa, Rhodesia, Namibia, and many countries in Africa, while segregation was the name given to the racially discriminatory system in the United States (US). In all these conditions racial solidarity arose among the oppressed (Magubane 1987).

Solidarity may transcend ethnic boundaries and involve whites and non-African persons, but it implies a common bond of interests and empathy, an understanding of the circumstances of power and working through the strategies, tactics and organisational forms necessary to change power relations. Solidarity is premised on strategies of communication, and these take many forms: face-to-face, door-to-door campaigns; church meetings; legal, illegal and clandestine work; organising mass protests against a powerful state apparatus; joining the armed struggle against overwhelming military odds--as was the case in South Africa, so well documented for the period 1960-1994, in the six volumes of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of South Africa report.

It is this history of the 20th-century anti-colonial, civil rights and liberation struggles that lie behind the United Nations (UN) resolution which has designated 2011 the Year of African Descendents. The resolution starts out by reaffirming the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which proclaims 'that all human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights and that everyone is entitled to all the rights and freedoms set forth therein, without distinction of any kind'. (1)

The UN resolution governing the activities for 2011 calls for the strengthening of 'national actions, regional and international cooperation for the benefit of people of African descent in relation to their full enjoyment of economic, cultural, social, civil and political rights, their participation and integration in all political, economic, social and cultural aspects of society, and the promotion of a greater knowledge of and respect for their diverse heritage and culture'. Such a resolution requires struggles on many levels, among them, national and global. This was the case with the anti-colonial struggles and this has to be the case with the current struggles against national and global economic and political systems which impede the realisation of the goals outlined in the resolution. The resolution also requires paying tribute to the movements that struggled for a world where the rights of the subjects of European and American empires would include taking their place as human beings and so redraw the maps of colonial geographies. One such 20th-century movement was the Garvey movement.

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Marcus Garvey: The Remapping of Africa and Its Diaspora
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.