Bröder emellan : Identitetsformering i det koloniserade Eritrea

Sammanfattning: This dissertation study examines individual and collective identity formation in Eritrea during the first period of Italian colonialism (1890-1916). Drawing on an African-centered theoretical framework, my analysis of identity formation centers on the interplay between colonial and patriarchal structures, in relations formed between African evangelical reformists and Swedish missionaries. The study is African-centered in the sense that it mainly focuses on African agency, while at the same time acknowledging the local context. Additionally, the theoretical framework is heavily informed by theories of black diasporic identity formation. While this means that I rely on contemporary theoretical formulations to examine the past, I argue that the afro-diasporic concepts that I draw on, are not always necessarily time and place bound, and thus allow for the exploration of black/African identity, in ways that have the capacity to advance theory-building in the present.The source materials consist of reports and minutes written by Swedish missionaries in the field, as well as letters written by members of the mission board in Stockholm. These sources include a multitude of accounts of verbal exchanges and actions carried out by Africans whom these writers encountered, and are therefore used (solely) for this purpose of accessing this information. Other sources used are letters penned by African evangelists hired by the Swedish missionaries. Thus, the letters are rather unique as the evangelists speak directly to their white supervisors in these letters.The findings of this study show that both colonial and local patriarchal structures influenced the identity formation of the evangelists and other Africans who attended Swedish missionary schools. While focusing on maintaining their masculinity, most men ended up being trapped within the dualistic worldview of colonialism.

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