TANTV Debuts 'Diaspora Voices' Series on Africa Day, Showcasing Diverse Perspectives from the African Diaspora

TANTV Debuts ‘Diaspora Voices’ Series on Africa Day, Showcasing Diverse Perspectives from the African Diaspora

TANTV's new 'Diaspora Voices' series, launched on Africa Day, invites a global audience to experience the diverse narratives and cultural influences of African descendants through monthly features that spotlight unique perspectives and shared histories."

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Submit Your Diaspora Story

My first interactions with the African Diaspora began during my upbringing in Atlanta, Georgia, where I interfaced with many Ethiopian, Eritrean, and Caribbean peers. I skipped class to attend an African and Caribbean student meeting in high school. It was there that I experienced first-hand the diversity of languages, cultural traditions, and religious perspectives because we also had large populations of Arabic-speaking Muslims.

The first time I recall learning explicitly about African history was in the 8th grade when my history teacher decided to deviate from our Georgia history curriculum to educate us about empires across the African continent. However, due to a dominantly European-focused education system that restricts African American and African history, learning experiences such as this were rare. Later in my collegiate studies about Spain, embedded deep in ancient Spanish texts were mentions of Moors who were Northern Africans that significantly impacted Spanish history and culture for centuries by contributing their extensive knowledge in engineering, architecture, astronomy, botany, among other intellectual subjects. Their influence remains today. From that point, I was intrigued to seek out the presence of African influence across Latin America and the Caribbean, which led me to studies on Cuba.

My first visit outside of the United States took me on a journey to Medellin, Colombia with a college friend. At the time, I thought it was odd that Colombia felt like home especially in familiar food experiences. I later realized that the homeplace feeling was due to the African influence that connected my low-country South Carolina family to traditions and practices existing in Colombia due to the large presence of people of African descent resulting from the transatlantic slave trade. Colombia was a turning point, I became fascinated with learning more about the African Diaspora particularly across the Americas and Caribbean; our shared histories, our shared experiences, and our shared struggles.

Geneva Greene

As a trained journalist and Communications scholar, I learned that historically Black journalists and Black-owned media, known as the Black press, sought to build connections across the global African Diaspora community in the late 1800s through mid-1900s (Castro, 2017). They intentionally published stories that emphasized common experiences and struggles. They spotlighted our similarities and differences as people of African descent across national boundaries. However, political agendas and the decline of the Black press drove wedges in connections across the Diaspora (Guridy, 2003; Benson, 2013). Mainstream media and film depictions negatively representing African Diaspora communities continue to cause disconnections.

TANTV strives to restore ties and improve representations of African Diaspora peoples. On May 25, 2024, we introduce Diaspora Voices, a new column offering an important space for us to tell our own stories and highlight what matters to us. Diaspora Voices resurrects the Black press tradition of educating each other and building bridges across geographies that allow us to unite based on differences and similarities. Monthly, TANTV will feature a different perspective from the African Diaspora. On May 25 of 1963, the Organization of Africa Unity formed, now known as the African Union. The founding date is recognized as “Africa Day”, “African Freedom Day” or “African Liberation Day”. Today, TANTV celebrates by introducing Diaspora Voices! Submit Your Diaspora Story

If you have ideas, thoughts or spotlight suggestions for the section, email engage@tantvstudios.com

Diaspora Voices

A collection of reflections from individuals across the African Diaspora sharing insights into their lived experience, personal perspective, or scholarly research. These voices express our humanity and address topics that matter to the community including health, culture, religion/spirituality, history, identity, and social justice.

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