Nuer-American Passages: Globalizing Sudanese Migration

Nuer-American Passages: Globalizing Sudanese Migration

By: Dianna Shandy (author)Hardback

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Traditionally a community of cattle farmers in Sudan, the Nuer are one of anthropology's most celebrated peoples. Half a century after social anthropologist Sir Edward E. Evans-Pritchard introduced the Nuer people to the global consciousness, they began arriving in the United States as refugees. Approximately 25,000 settled in such cities as Sioux Falls, South Dakota, Nashville, Tennessee, and Saint Paul, Minnesota. In this study of their migration from a war-torn society to North America, Shandy asks how the diaspora Nuer, especially Nuer-Americans, deal with changing kin obligations and privileges to maintain their Nuerness. What parts of a people's culture are left behind when they move to another country? How much of the home culture and coping strategies continue to aid refugees trying to fit into a new society? These questions are not only crucial for understanding how best to view refugees, but all kinds of global migrants. Assumptions that refugees fleeing to Western countries come from ""stone-age"" societies do not recognize the ways Africans employ social networks and technology in their quest for better lives for themselves and their families. Shandy argues that flawed representations fail to credit African populations with linkages between ""home"" and the diaspora, overlooking important realities in how these ties shape the lives of people in both settings. Refugees are not hopeless beneficiaries of the communities who are receiving them, but rather, social actors and active agents in producing culture and shaping their own futures.

About Author

Dianna J. Shandy is assistant professor of anthropology at Macalester College. She is the author, with David McCurdy and James Spradley, of The Cultural Experience: Ethnography in Complex Society.

Product Details

  • ISBN13: 9780813030470
  • Format: Hardback
  • Number Of Pages: 256
  • ID: 9780813030470
  • ISBN10: 0813030471

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