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Postcolonial women writers in a transnational frame
Elleke Boehmer

addressing the historical movements of people, are founded upon a critique of fixed origins and ethnic absolutes: in Avtar Brah’s words, diaspora ‘takes account of a homing desire, as distinct from a desire for a “homeland”’.8 As Paul Gilroy influentially argues in The Black Atlantic, cunningly shifting postcolonial and cultural studies preoccupations from ‘roots’ to ‘routes’, modern black identities were developed in motion, through the transmission of peoples and cultural influences, through encounter and dialogue, rather than by way of a competition between static entities

in Stories of women
De-scribing Imperial identity from alien to migrant
Peter Childs

discourses that cross or collapse these categories. In his analysis of a black Atlantic culture, Paul Gilroy proposes diaspora as an alternative way of understanding modernity and cultural Norquay_04_Ch3 51 22/3/02, 9:48 am 52 Theorising identities identities (the term ‘diaspora’ was taken up by historians of Africa and slavery in the 1950s, although Gilroy says that its genealogy as a concept in black cultural history is obscure). He maintains that diasporic identities work at ‘other levels than those marked by national boundaries’ (1993: 218). Similarly, Stuart

in Across the margins