The initial push for a federation among British Caribbean colonies might have originated among colonial officials and white elites, but the banner for federation was quickly picked up by Afro-Caribbean activists who saw in the possibility of a united West Indian nation a means of securing political power and more.
In Building a Nation, Eric Duke moves beyond the narrow view of federation as only relevant to Caribbean and British imperial histories. By examining support for federation among many Afro-Caribbean and other black activists in and out of the West Indies, Duke convincingly expands and connects the movement's history squarely into the wider history of political and social activism in the early to mid-twentieth century black diaspora.
Exploring the relationships between the pursuit of Caribbean federation and black diaspora politics, Duke convincingly posits that federation was more than a regional endeavor; it was a diasporic, black nation-building undertakingwith broad support in diaspora centers such as Harlem and Londondeeply immersed in ideas of racial unity, racial uplift, and black self-determination.
A volume in this series New World Diasporas, edited by Kevin A. Yelvington
About the Author
Eric D. Duke is associate professor in the Department of African American Studies, Africana Women’s Studies, and History at Clark Atlanta University. He is coeditor of Extending the Diaspora: New Histories of Black People.