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Between the Black diaspora of enslavement and the Nigerian diaspora since the demise of colonialism: An assessment of the consequences of two historic migrations to the United States

Nsikan-Abasi Paul E Udofia, University of Massachusetts Amherst


Based on the research questions employed in this study, the Nigerian immigrant community first began with student sojourners and is currently more effective within the African-American context. This community would perhaps have been much slower in evolving but for the crisis of institutional instability back in the Nigerian homeland as well as the policies of two American presidents. The major features of the Nigerian immigrant community with varying degrees of influences in America are: the Nigerian offspring, the Nigerian church, the Nigerian community media, the Nigeria women association, the Nigerian attorneys and physicians. The Nigerian offspring represent a conciliatory generation to Black America, the Nigerian homeland, Euro-America, and the most favorable orbit of incorporating Nigerian indices into the American mosaic. Houston, Dallas, and Atlanta exhibit one of the strongest evidences of the Southern typology of Nigerian immigrants in the U.S. Within this same setting, the generational and socio-cultural experiences of Nigerians and African-Americans are closely related. Both in their American agenda as well as aspirations toward the homelands, Nigerians are replaying the generational schemes of Black America. Analyses of the relationships between the generations of forced migration and voluntary migration in the Nigerian-U.S. based community media conform to a greater degree of understanding than misunderstanding. The benefits derived from the two historic migrations of black Africans to the U.S. are lopsided. Predisposed to neither assimilation nor integration, the Nigerian diaspora in particular exhibit a carefully selective pattern of socioeconomic identification which corresponds with segregated incorporation into society. Generally, the incorporation of the African diaspora in America favors a north to-east to-south thrust of the races of Africa. Africans from West and Central Africa, where a majority of the forced migrants were taken, are more likely to occupy an unfavorable orbit of American incorporation. Due mostly to American slavery, the Nigerian-African variable represents the most distinctive phase of reactive-global migration into the U.S. after decolonization. The predicted problem of "color line in the twentieth century" also corresponded with the reactive patterns of cross-cultural migrations particularly of the races of color and mostly at the intersection of the fifth wave of global migration. Sustained exchanges between Nigeria and the U.S. after colonialism therefore began with the fifth wave of reactive global migration. This marks an important new phase in the development and integration of Nigerian-African indices into the modern world.

Subject Area

African American Studies|Black studies|Black history

Recommended Citation

Udofia, Nsikan-Abasi Paul E, "Between the Black diaspora of enslavement and the Nigerian diaspora since the demise of colonialism: An assessment of the consequences of two historic migrations to the United States" (2007). Doctoral Dissertations Available from Proquest. AAI3573121.