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BY 4.0 license Open Access Published by De Gruyter Open Access May 13, 2019

The Black Mediterranean: Liminality and the Reconfiguration of Afroeuropeanness

  • Giuseppe Grimaldi EMAIL logo
From the journal Open Cultural Studies


This article focuses on emerging forms of ethnic identification among Italians of Ethiopian and Eritrean origins. In 2013, in parallel with the so-called refugees’ crisis in Europe, children of immigrants engaged in the Milanese management of forced migrations in the diasporic neighbourhood of Milano Porta Venezia. They legitimated their actions by emphasising a shared Habesha ancestral ethnicity with the asylum seekers from the Horn of Africa. The article considers their ethnic identification in relation to the changes in the public discourse on the Mediterranean route. These ethnic identifications and mobilisations are interpreted as claims for social recognition as Italians rather than a form of the revivification of their ancestral ethnicity in the analysis. The Black Mediterranean represent a privileged analytical and physical space to work on the resignification of Afro-European subjectivities in contemporary Europe.

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Received: 2018-08-01
Accepted: 2018-12-14
Published Online: 2019-05-13
Published in Print: 2019-01-01

© 2019 Giuseppe Grimaldi, published by De Gruyter Open

This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 Public License.

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