Lecture by Andrea Arrington (Indiana State University), “The Limitations of Nostalgia: The Past, Present, and Future of Displaced Zimbabwean Women”

When Feb 20, 2017
from 03:30 PM to 04:30 PM
Where 118 Willard Building
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In 2008 Zimbabwe's citizens braced themselves for the runoff election between Robert Mugabe and Morgan Tsvangirai. After almost a decade of upheaval, the election was a critical point in the country's history. Many citizens were living outside of Zimbabwe, displaced by legal order or displaced by the deteriorating conditions. White Zimbabweans documented their experiences in numerous memoirs and newsletters, along with countless news stories covering the land redistribution that pushed white farmers off their land and often out of the country. Black Zimbabwean experiences of displacement were far less documented. This paper uses interviews to examine the language of displacement from both black and white Zimbabwean women living in exile. Both groups of women revealed nostalgia for the pre-Independence era, when white minority rule was firmly in place. I consider the similarities in the ways both black and white women chose to remember that colonial past and analyze why nostalgia was not enough to allow those two groups to bridge their differences and organize together.

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