I previously wrote a post that included the words of Chimamanda Adichie from her TED Talk, ‘The Danger of a Single Story’. Her work argued that we, on a global scale, often only see and trust one story in regards to people, events and things; we close our mind to other perceptions and possibilities. In an article featured in the Guardian (2013), TMS Ruge suggests that we are no longer living in this era of ‘single stories’ and that “Twitter, Facebook and other forms of social media are bringing African voices and new, varied narratives to the forefront”. This is an exciting prospect for Africans to share their culture and in turn, for the world to learn it.
This notion of dispersing cultures can be defined as diaspora. Actually, diaspora refers to the people who have been dispersed from their homeland. Diasporic media can refer to any media that caters to a group, received by a reader that is interested in the news of their homeland. This type of media permeates my home everyday – both of my parents are Scottish, migrating to Australia together over 30 years ago.
Prior to the Internet being a part of our everyday functioning, my Dad would get parcels of local newspapers and magazines from my Grandparents. This gave him a sense of connection to the place where he grew up; keeping him informed about football results and the latest UK political drama. Today however, news is easily disseminated and received from the thousands of miles away via social media, emails and news websites.
A study into the media practices of Australian migrants by Juan Salazar states “40 per cent of the Australian population are first or second generation migrants” (2012). This suggests to me that there are many families just like mine, with ties to their homeland being constantly strengthened by diasporic media.
Ruge, TMS 2013 ‘How the African diaspora is using social media to influence development’, The Guardian Accessed at: http://www.theguardian.com/global-development-professionals-network/2013/feb/06/african-diaspora-social-media-tms-ruge
Salazar, Juan Francisco 2012 ‘Digital Stories and emerging citizens’ media practices by migrant youth in western Sydney’ 3CMedia: Journal of Community, Citizen’s and Third Sector Media and Communication, Issue 7. Accessed at: http://web.a.ebscohost.com.ezpr oxy.uow.edu.au/ehost/detail?vid= 3&sid=c5373eb0-b85c-44ea- b3e5- cc2e901acc61%40sessionmgr40 03&hid=4201&bdata=JnNpdGU 9ZWhvc3QtbGl2ZQ%3d%3d#db= ufh&AN=79551905