Archive for Diaspora

African Diaspora in Asia

Posted in HISTORY, Southeastern Asia with tags , on July 17, 2010 by Mijiza Zeyzey

Many people are unaware of the African descent population of Asia. Asia has the second largest population of people of African descent. Five hundred million descendents of Africa create the African Diaspora in Asia.

Colonial influences tried to divide African descendants living in Asia from their roots and fellow victims of the African Diaspora. Nevertheless, African descendants have lived in Asia for thousands of years.     ********************************************************************************************************************************************

These descendents are at home in:

  • Philippines
  • Laos
  • Vietnam
  • Burma
  • Indonesia
  • Malaysia
  • Kampuchea
  • Thailand
  • Southern China

Whereas, technically New Guinea is located in the Oceanic region, due to the current conflict between African descendants in New Guinea islands and Indonesia, they are included with the aboriginals of Asia. New Guinea has been colonized many times during the following time frames:

  • In 1512, the Portuguese arrived and soon seized and colonized Timor
  • In 1528, the Spanish seized the Philippines which were inhabited by blacks
  • In 1545, the Spanish claimed the territory and named it Nueva (New) Guinea due to a resemblance to the people of the Guinea Coast in West Africa
  • In 1600, the Dutch arrived and overtook the Spanish and the Portuguese
  • In 1688, the British arrived and began to compete with Holland
  • In 1871, the Russians attempted to gain territory
  • In 1876, the Italians attempted to gain territory
  • In 1788, the French arrived and claimed Bougainville Islands
  • In 1834, Holland and Britain agreed to split the island join in opposing third parties
  • In 1883, the British began massive deportation of Papuan slaves to their Australian colonies, it was called ‘Blackbirding’
  • In 1834, the Germans claimed Northeastern New Guinea
  • In 1888, the northeastern territory of the island was called German New Guinea, southern territory was called British New Guinea, and the western territory was called Dutch New Guinea
  • In 1902, British Papua New Guinea ceded to Canberra
  • In 1906, Australians replaced the British, and it became Australia Papua New Guinea
  • In 1942, Japanese invaded the island
  • In 1945, the U.S. invaded the island and retook the west for the Dutch and the east for the Australians
  • In 1949, West Papua became independent of the Dutch and Indonesia took over
  • In 1962, Holland pulled out of the island
  • In 1969, Indonesia and the Dutch signed an agreement for the Dutch to turn over West Papua to Indonesia and to allow African descends to determine if they wanted to be part of Indonesia or independent

Just as with so many of the African Diaspora, African Asians endure discrimination and in some countries, they have suffered what amounts closely to genocide.

Justine Gaga – Artist

Posted in CULTURE, Humanity, NEWS, South America, Spotlight with tags , , , , , on June 29, 2010 by Mijiza Zeyzey

In an interview with Colombia Reports, Justine said,

“My work is about solitude, people who are alone and in need of protection . . . I lived by myself for a long time and not because I wanted to.”

Justine found inspiration in loneliness. Her art explores the isolation that comes from migration or being exiled from your home. For Justine, the theme of loneliness is both personal and political.

In Colombia, where Justine is living and working, there are an estimated 4.9 million refugees. Justine was funded to come to Colombia and hold workshops for poor, predominantly Afro-Colombian, women and children living outside Medellin.

Refugees have been forced to leave their homes due to armed conflict in Colombia. Afro-Colombians have been targeted by illegal armed groups. Justine learned about the conflict from the mouths of children,

“They were very sad, they told me that where they come from there is war . . . to remove violence from their minds by helping them to express themselves . . . perhaps they will learn that life is not only violence.”

African Descent Population in South America

Posted in CULTURE, South America, Spotlight with tags , , , , on June 28, 2010 by Mijiza Zeyzey

About 10 million Africans were brought to South America to work as slave between 1518 and 1873. Over 3 million of them went to Brazil to work on sugar and coffee plantations. In Colombia, 200,000 of them worked on sugar and coffee plantations, and in gold mines. In Venezuela, Peru, Argentina, Uruguay, and Paraguay an estimated 100,000 worked on sugar plantations, in mines, on docks, and in fields.

Today, the African descent population is South America is estimated to be between 20 and 68 million. It is hard to come to an exact number due to differences in self identification. The division in self identification is a result of Diaspora. It is based on the degree of lost pride of heritage due to an attempt to assimilate into White society. It is also due to the identification others have made.

Ethnonyms (identifying terms) used in South America include:

  • African Americans
  • African Negroes
  • Afro Americas
  • Bahia Brazilians
  • Black Indians
  • Blacks
  • Bushenenge
  • Bush Negroes
  • Cafucos
  • Creoles
  • Libres
  • Morenos
  • Mulattos
  • Negroes
  • Nengres
  • Noires
  • Maroons
  • Pardos
  • Prêtos
  • Trigueños
  • Zambos

Interview | Greg Carroll, CEO of American Jazz Museum –

Posted in CULTURE, Latin America, Mother Africa, NEWS, Spotlight with tags , , , on June 28, 2010 by Mijiza Zeyzey

“Greg Carroll is CEO of the American Jazz Museum in Kansas City. In collaboration with the Consulate of Mexico in Kansas City and the Mattie Rhodes Center, the museum is holding an exhibition of large-scale photographs and artifacts that reveals cultural connections between Africa and Latin America. “Atlantic Diaspora: The Musical and Social Influences of Africans in Mexico and the United States” runs through Sept. 30. Admission is free. This conversation took place at the grand opening of the exhibit.”- Excerpt from

In the interview, Greg Carroll said,

“. . . there are Africans all over the world. The descendants from slavery, coming from West Africa, did not only go to North America. The diaspora stopped everywhere the boats stopped: in Haiti, in Puerto Rico, in Mexico.”

Read more:

African Diaspora – Exodus; Movement of the People

Posted in Awareness, Europe, HISTORY, Latin America, Mother Africa, North America, Oceania, South America with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on June 5, 2010 by Mijiza Zeyzey

Throughout history African people have been forced to leave their homes to go to foreign lands. As a result of the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade, imperial exploitation, and civil war, Africans have been shipped or driven into the Americas, the Caribbean, the Middle East, Europe and other African countries.

Due to Diaspora, more people of African descent live in Brazil, South America, than in any country on the African continent (with the exception of Nigeria). Forced migration of people of African descent has made up an estimated 14% of the world’s population.

Country – African Descent Population

Brazil – 85,783,143


United States – 38,499,304


Colombia – 9,452,872


Haiti – 8,701,439


Dominican Republic – 7,985,991


Italy –3,090,000


France – 3,000,000


Jamaica – 2,731,419


Venezuela – 2,641, 481



United Kingdom – 2,080,000


Cuba – 1,126,894


Peru – 875,427


Canada – 783,795


Ecuador – 680,000


Trinidad and Tobago – 610,000


Nicaragua – 520,786