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eBook formatKindle Edition, (torrent)En
File size5.6 Mb
Pages count376
Book rating4.28 (12 votes)
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Modern Blackness is an in-depth inquiry into the formation of Jamaica's national cultural identity. Since independence, Jamaicans and state cultural policy makers have made repeated efforts to define their place in the global sphere while undergoing political, economic and social change. In each iteration, their cultural identity is continuously subject to redefinition and re-evaluation. Thomas's examination of historical and contemporary cultural formation reveals the state and citizenry's struggles over a common identity, for a definition of who its "one people" are. The post-independence project of universal creole nationalism was reflected in the country's motto: "Out of Many, One People." The characterization has been largely superseded by "modern blackness"—a blackness that is urban, migratory, based in youth-oriented culture and influenced by African American popular style as the way that Jamaicans define themselves. Today, to be wealthy and powerful, as opposed to being educated, has become the way of progress for Jamaican citizens. Thomas integrated her research with extensive community involvement, working with artists, teachers, administrators and policy makers. Her experience as a professional dancer provided a portal into one aspect of the nation's cultural development, which she examined through participating in classes, observing performances, and interviewing community members on their conceptions of the links among art, culture and a national identity.

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