Accepted paper:

Mobility as social norm: Travel, homeliness and community among two Afro-feminist performers

Authors:

Silvia Wojczewski (Université de Lausanne)

Paper short abstract:

By following the journeys of Afro-feminist performers, the work explores transnational mobility and digital practices as a social norm conditioning relations of work, love and friendship. It discusses how mobility impacts on existential understandings of self.

Paper long abstract:

Drawing on the case of two Afro-feminist activists, performers and researchers, the work uses biographical analysis to explore the perceptions of transnational mobility as a social norm conditioning relations of work, love and friendship. By following the journeys of the two activists, I will retrace the evolution of an inherently mobile lifestyle and how it impacts on existential understandings of self as mobile. I will trace how both subjects weave mobility into their lives and how they create a sense of homeliness that is deeply rooted in their understanding of being able to create home wherever they go - through activity (dance), through the creation of small routines while travelling as well as through their relation to each other - their understanding as a "we" instead of "me". I will show that for both transnational travel as well as being visible on social media has become a condition to build and practice community in a double sense: experiencing a globally entangled Afro-diasporic and feminist community as well as relating to, and building, a global network with dancers, performers and researchers. The condition to maintain these transnational contacts and global network as well as to gain potential new work and travel opportunities are promoted by digital practices that become part of their routines in mobility. The ethnographic data produced during participation in travels as well as through lifestory interviews will be used for a discussion on the sense of motility/mobility as both existential and geographical (Ingold 2011, Hage 2009).

panel P083
Creating locality in mobile times: intimacy, friendship and belonging between digital and physical co-presence [ANTHROMOB]