Khokholkova N. “Africans of the twenty-first century”: transcultural identity representations in the virtual space

N. Khokholkova - Institute for African Studies of the Russian Academy of Sciences Moscow; Russian Federation ORCID: 0000-0002-5165-1925


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ABSTRACT. In the context of globalization and intensification of digitalization processes that have gone beyond the scope of technology, the sociocultural reality is gradually transforming. The mechanisms of communication and socialization, as well as manners of self-perception and self-presentation have changed with the emergence of the Internet. Also the digital ego phenomenon has arisen. The article is devoted to the representations of the virtual identity of “Africans of the twenty-first century”. The author focuses on the transcultural self-identification patterns constructed by the representatives of “Africa Generation” (#AfriGen, Generation + Africa) on the web. This category, coined by the media in the early 2000s, is used to describe representatives of an imaginative virtual community of successful professionals of African descent born between the late 1970s and early 1990s in Africa and beyond; or the new cultural transfer ‘agents’ acting around the world. The article discusses the global African diaspora and its division into the ‘Old’ and the ‘New’ ones. It emphasizes the state of the productive crisis of the cultural identity, inherent in African migrants, which contributes to the synthesis of new forms of identity. The author analyzes local and global transcultural identity projects, including “AfriGens@Work” and “Virtual African Diaspora: Interactive African Diaspora”. Particular attention is paid to the concept of Afropolitanism and its genesis and evolution. The idea proposed in 2005 by the writer Taiye Tuakli-Wosornu (Selasi) is considered to be both an alternative to cosmopolitanism and its continuation. Afropolitanism, being, for the most part, a virtual reality phenomenon, have had a significant impact on the making of the digital postcolonial discourse.


DOI 10.31250/2618-8600-2020-3(9)-90-102
УДК 0 04.946:39


KEYWORDS: Africa, diaspora, digitalization, virtual identity, transcultural identity, Afropolitanism



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