Whiteness(es) on the move: the raced experience of Portuguese migrants in Angola
Carolina Valente Cardoso
(School of Global Studies GU)
Paper short abstract:
Drawing on the everyday life experiences of Portuguese contemporary migrants in Angola, this paper explores relationships between race and North-South mobility.
Paper long abstract:
Recent ethnographic studies conducted in sub-Saharan countries urge us to consider the specificities and multiplicity of whiteness(es) and white subjectivities outside of the Global North – namely, its conspicuous, contested and often resented character (Gressier 2015; MacIntosh 2016; Zyl-Hermann & Boersema 2017)
This paper contributes to these discussions with empirical insights gathered through participant observation among Portuguese people living and working in Benguela (Angola) in the year 2015.
Similarly to other cases described in the literature, one can encounter in post-colonial Angola simultaneous indication of a prevailing cultural hegemony of whiteness and the remnants of an anti-colonial and anti-white rhetoric. Suggesting thus that whiteness can be perceived by the mobile subjects as both asset and hindrance, I describe my informants’ strategies to make sense of, face up to or circumvent the different local discourses simultaneously at play; and I refer the collective narratives they would summon to ‘de-racialize’ and thus legitimize their presence (namely, Portuguese “nationhood narratives of in-betweeness” or even “dubious whiteness” [Fernandes 2017]) or the allusion to the specificities of the particular geo-economic configuration.
The (im)mobility of race: European perspectives [Anthropology of Race and Ethnicity Network]