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How is Pan-Africanism different from Black Nationalism?

I tend to dislike the term Nationalism because the very nature of the spread of the Black diaspora has put us in different nations created by other people. Most of the Black nations in Africa had their borders defined by Whites. So though I consider the terms somewhat equivalent I would lean toward Pan-Africanism.

Also I think technology makes nations obsolete. I have visited a board in Pakistan and left messages. I am communicating with Lebonese and Swedish men on another board so information and influence can cross national borders easier than wind thru the trees. I got more responses from my discussion of economists ignoring depreciation there than here.

That is an issue that affects everyone regardless of race. Air and water pollution don't care about national boundaries either. What is global warming going to do to Africa? When do members of the African diaspora discuss that? Is there an African climatological think tank? So I guess I am a Pan-Humanist with an African bias.

umbrarchist
I believe the consciousness of Pan Africanism is growing maturing and manifesting itself in a variety of ways. I see more and more organizations forming with its members representing the complete African Diaspora. I see more and more people connecting the global problem of white supremacy to the local conditions of the African Diaspora. I see more and more brothers and sistas marrying across intercultural boundaries. The movement may have become stagnated in the aspect of fist pumping slogan Nationalism. But the complex work of weaving the experiences of the various areas of the African Diaspora is growing.
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Originally posted by MBM:
What is the current state of Pan Africanism in the United States? What are its objectives? Who are its current leaders? What are their strategies to achieve their objectives?

MBM

The current state of Pan Africanism in amerikkka is worse than the state of Black Nationalism. Why?

1) Our people in this country have absolutely no understanding of Pan Africanism

2) No desire to define themselves as Africans and hold negative views of homeland Africans as a whole

3) Fail to see themselves as an agent for change in Africa

4) Fail to see, or reject the concept, that a strong Black African continent can change social condtions of Black people in amerikkka.

Some of this is based on ignorance and cultural amnesia. Most of it, IMO, is due to the fact that Africans in amerikkka are disengaged because all of our indivdual energies are needed to provide food, clothes, and shelter for themselves and their famlly. for those of us who do provide the basics, the rest of the energy goes to amassing material posessions and individual wealth. The overwhelming product of our labor goes to the enrichment of people who do not spend their money with us. Building a nation (or nations) using the Pan African model requires ORGANIZATION. Organizing requires time and resource (human and capital). In the case of building Pan African communities, the ability to do so requires a collective will. Blacks in amerikkka have the collective will to integrate and assimilate; and intergration and assimilation in the white amerikkan and euopean context, is a road block to reaching Pan African objectives.

There is no Pan African leader in this country - on objectives and no agenda. Most Pan Africans beleive that it is a waste of time to look to the African in amerikkka.

I beleive the strategy, from what I have seen as a member of the Pan African community and movement, is to wait out the integrationalist and assimilationalist. Pan Africans look forward to the day when the masses will finally see the error of forced integration as a liberating model, and will choose Pan Africanism as their guiding principle. There are signs that this is happening - especially in areas of education, immigration law, and fall of Affirmative Action. The call for African centered schools are getting louder across the country, and the Black only school movement hasn't had this much energy since the first Freedom Schools were conceptualized and operational in Brooklyn during the decade of the 60's.

Personally, I am hoping that whites continue on their course of embracing white only rule. White folks are the most dangerous people on the planet and in conjunction with Arabs, are currently dangerous to our genetic survival. I only wish our people would see the writing on the wall... and it is clear to me... African centered Pan Africanism is the only empowering ideology available to Black peoples.
I would like to add that this nation's most famous assimilationist and integrationalist, W.E.B DuBois, gave up on amerikkka and became a citizen of Ghana near the end of his life. In his book titled "The World and Africa," DuBois offers scathing criticism of the integrationalist thoughts and ideas that made him a hero amongst Black academe and Black intellectuals. Most of us know about his wars with Booker T. Washington and Marcus Garvey (who I think deserves a national holiday WAAAAAAAYYYYYY before Dr. King), but we have very little discussion about how he reversed is position and embraced the ideas of both men.

DuBois metamorphis is needed in the masses of Black folks. Maybe this will happen before we disappear from the planet.
Let me ask an extremely ignorant [and no doubt, media influenced], but sincere question about Pan Africanism as it relates specifically to the African in America: How am I to believe there is a desire for Pan Africanism on the continent of Africa, outside of those currently out of power, and thus, those who would surplant the current power elite?.
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Originally posted by Kweli4Real:
Let me ask an extremely ignorant [and no doubt, media influenced], but sincere question about Pan Africanism as it relates specifically to the African in America: How am I to believe there is a desire for Pan Africanism on the continent of Africa, outside of those currently out of power, and thus, those who would surplant the current power elite?.

You can't.

Which is why you must organize and research for yourself.

However, you should not assume that Pan Africanism is a transfer of power from one oppressive group to another (power elite)
I think pan-africanism is unpragmatic and a waste of time.

I have long argued that pro-blackness as an ideology within the American construct is a much more rational approach to the development of BLACK not African individuals in America. We ceased to be African when we lost the majority of our African cultures and attachment to the African community and continent. Now we are something else, and we need as black men and women to redefine ourselves accordingly and that can not be done by some mythical attachment to a continent where the individuals their are as different to us than we are to say the Chinese.

That doesn't mean that we should as Black men consider the plight of Africa and use our abilities when their is opportunity to encourage the growth of the land of our ancestors. However, taking resources and energy from our personal development and transferring a significant amount of those to developing pan-Africanism doesn't make much real world sense.
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We ceased to be African when we lost the majority of our African cultures and attachment to the African community and continent.

Case in point as to why Pan Africanism is useless in amerikkka.

Don't know about anyone else, but when I look in the mirror, I see an African looking back.
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That doesn't mean that we should as Black men consider the plight of Africa and use our abilities when their is opportunity to encourage the growth of the land of our ancestors. However, taking resources and energy from our personal development and transferring a significant amount of those to developing pan-Africanism doesn't make much real world sense.

The above statement is an example of how we can't see the development of conttinental Africans as an empowering tool for Africans in amerikkka. Pan Africanism INCLUDES Africans in this country. So, the struggle for an empowered homeland does not look anything like "taking resources and energy from our personal development..."
Implicit in your argument (which I do understand) is that the synergy between two seperate groups, regardless of what you look like in the mirror, will be greater than the focus of one people group on itself.

As you are well aware of Africa has never had a homogenous culture even amongst the indigenous tribes and nations in its history. So by basis of history, how do you create a pan-African movement large enough to erode our natural territorialism and nationalism not just within Africa but between Africans and Blacks in America?

Cultural identity is a large part of solidarity, and my brother, we and Africans have a large cultural gulf. So not only are you wasting resources, intellectual capital, and time attempting to create a critical mass of pan-african allegiences that break down cultural barriers between Blacks and Africans but you also have to break down these barriers amongst indigenous Africans & African nations themselves, which has never been historically done.

An African isn't an African isn't an African. Now in a hypothetical scenario, you could create economically driven partnerships that benefit all parties involved irrespective of culture, but then it wouldn't be pan-African in nature, as indivdual nations or groups would seek greater economic gains through partnerships with individual who had greater economic leverage.

That means that the only tie that COULD bind pan-Africanism is color, because as I have already argued their are multiple cultures under the umbrella term African.

My argument is simply this, if we improve our condition as Blacks, and create power bases and economic resources to make us strong and prosperous then there is opportunity to tackle the world. It seems awfully hard to tackle the world when you don't control home.
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As you are well aware of Africa has never had a homogenous culture even amongst the indigenous tribes and nations in its history. So by basis of history, how do you create a pan-African movement large enough to erode our natural territorialism and nationalism not just within Africa but between Africans and Blacks in America?

Of course, Africans throughout the Diaspora do not share ALL of the same values, codes, or moral principles. As this conversation continues, maybe we should spend some time, if possible, agreeing to terms and definitions because as it stands, I need to know exactly how you would define homegenous. Be that as it may, I would argue that pure homogeneity is not needed throughout the African collective for Pan Africanism to be realized. That is to say, an agenda could be practical once we begin to ignore the small differences while drawing strenth from the much larger pool of commonalities. In simplest terms, I must learn and embrace the concept that says I have more in common with Africans in Brixton, Azania, France, Santa Domingo, Ghana, Havana, and Sydney, then I do with the european who lives down the hall in apartment 2C.

With that said, I don't have to search the world for the magic link that ties me to African people throughout the Diaspora. What connects us to other Africans, regardless of language, geographic location, religion, sexual orientation, and gender, is found in the nature of our struggle to survive white behavior, culture, thought, and power systems.
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Cultural identity is a large part of solidarity, and my brother, we and Africans have a large cultural gulf. So not only are you wasting resources, intellectual capital, and time attempting to create a critical mass of pan-african allegiences that break down cultural barriers between Blacks and Africans but you also have to break down these barriers amongst indigenous Africans & African nations themselves, which has never been historically done.

Actually, we do not have a cultural gulf. In my opinion, we have cultural amnesia. We also suffer from other pahtologies that cause us to follow non-liberating agendas - such as integration.

Also, it is clear to me that Africans around the world have demonstrated large levels of CULTURAL IDENTIFICATION. During the campaign to rid Africa of neo settler colonialism, our brothers and sisters in the country of Angola entered into armed struggle against Portugal. It was Fidel Castro who sent Cuban troops to Angola to help Africans win their independence. When the global media asked Castro to justify his involvement, he responded, "the blood of Africa runs through our (Cubans)veins... we are a Latin African people."

Several months after Nelson Mandela was free from prison, he came to this country. His first stops were The United Nations, BROOKLYN - BED STUY, and HARLEM. Why? Bed Stuy and Harlem? Because he wanted to go where his people lived. And he wasn't disappointed. Brothers and sisters from all walks of life... people who did not even know Mandela, came to hear him speak.

I have lived in Ghana and travled to Senegal, Cameroon, Egypt, The Ivory Coast, Ethiopia, Kenya, and Cape Verde. In all of those places, I was around enlightened Black Africans who welcomed me home. Not once was I made to feel as an outsider and in Ghana, I was given a new name... a name which I have legally used since 1990. In Ghana, any African from amerikkka who wishes citizenship, the application is approved within a matter of hours. No red tape and no problems. Also, as part of an organization of Africans all born in amerikkka, we built a school called the Pan African Institute of Technolgy on land mostly donated by the Ghanaian government.

These are just a few examples and I can provide many more. However, the cultural identity and solidarity is there and we don't have to dig deep to find it.
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That means that the only tie that COULD bind pan-Africanism is color, because as I have already argued their are multiple cultures under the umbrella term African.

Not the only tie as I have demonstrated... but very significant one.
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My argument is simply this, if we improve our condition as Blacks, and create power bases and economic resources to make us strong and prosperous then there is opportunity to tackle the world. It seems awfully hard to tackle the world when you don't control home.

By Blacks, I assume you mean Africans in amerikkka.

Anyway...

You are preaching to the choir. I am all for an economic agenda as long as it is not connected to anything that looks like using money, capital, or resources made available by the IMF or World Bank.
As an African(blackman)in America, it is impossible for you to have a negative view of Africa and a positive view of yourself. Its like loving the fruit but hating the tree. How can you have fruit without the tree. To say it simple if you look deeply you actually hate yourself.Unless you actually know brothers and sistas from the Continent, spent time with them, I think it is highly ignorant to say things about how different we are from Africans on the Continent, or from the Carribean or from South America.Sure their are differences, variations in cultural customs, but all in all we have about 95% commonality, like black people from down south dealing with brothers and sistas from up north, or out west. Lets cut this foolishness out and realize we can walk and chew bubble gum at the same time. We are in a global world, face it.We as a people have to have a global outlook. I suggest we start looking at Africa, the Carribean and Central and South America,for international opportunity I belive this can be benifical for all our people and I truely believe its the only way we will be able to survive.
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Sure their are differences, variations in cultural customs, but all in all we have about 95% commonality, like black people from down south dealing with brothers and sistas from up north, or out west. Lets cut this foolishness out and realize we can walk and chew bubble gum at the same time.

Well said. And I do beleive this is our reality. We spend far too much time and energy pointing out the "cultural variations."

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