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Ghana and the Black Diaspora

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  • Ghana and the Black Diaspora

    How Ghana made itself the African home for a return of the black diaspora

    By Kwasi Gyamfi AsieduNovember 14, 2018
    In a recently released music video, Fuse ODG and Damian Marley (Bob Marley’s youngest son) explore the themes of slavery, colonialism, black pride and modern day police brutality. ‘Bra Fie’ (which translates from the Ghanaian language Akan as “Come Home”) is an Afrobeats tune that harks back to the pan-Africanist themes of some of the older Marley’s anthemic hits. But it could also be a soundtrack for a potential wave of “homecoming” to Ghana for people of African descent.

    August 2019 will make it 400 years since the anchoring of an English ship in Jamestown, Virginia carrying a small group of enslaved Africans. While African slaves had been in other parts of the Americas region (including the United States) before 1619, that year is widely regarded as the commencement of the African slave trade to North America.

    In all, the Transatlantic slave trade from Africa to the New World lasted four centuries (1444-1888) and involved nearly all the European powers.

    When Brazil became the last country to abolish the slave trade in 1888, an estimated 17 million African women and men had been seized from the continent and transported to plantations across the Americas—a conservative figure that UNESCO admits excludes the many who died on the way and were thrown into the high seas. Many of the enslaved Africans came from West Africa and the present-day nation of Ghana was a significant place of origin. To mark the landmark anniversary, Ghana’s president Nana Akufo-Addo in October, declared 2019 as “The Year of Return”, launching a series of programs that would seek to encourage people of African ancestry to make the “birthright journey home for the global African family.” The idea of a homecoming of “our brothers and sisters” who were taken away is one that Ghana has long fancied and championed.
    Whiskey for my men, and beer for my horses.
    TANSTAAFL = There Ain't No Such Thing As A Free Lunch
    Bock's First Law of History: The Past shapes the Present, which forms the Future. *

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