African Diaspora in America-The Concept of New DiasporaNovember 30, 2018
African Diaspora in America-The Concept of New Diaspora
African Diaspora in America…The New Diaspora is The Name Given to The Voluntary Movement of Highly and Often Skilled Individuals From Africa to The Western World. Africa since 1990 Has Lost Over 20,000 Professionals to The Western World in a Quest of a Greener Pastures.
The word diaspora is a dispersion or spread of any people from their original homeland. A new diaspora is the displacement, migration, and dispersion of individuals away from their homelands by forces such as globalization, neoliberalism, and imperialism. Although the term diaspora has been used for the Jewish diaspora in the history, it is now used to explain a variety of events and phenomena. In addition to this, like every term in social sciences, the term diaspora’s definition is also debatable. Scholars have made various explanations about diaspora. Some of them have added more features to the previous definitions whereas some of them have thought that the term should be more limited to define that phenomenon. In this paper, firstly I want to give the definitions of some scholars who have already defined diaspora.
However, the concept of a new diaspora looks at two possible causes of African Diaspora in America.
1. Internal Pushy-Factors: These are the factors within the continent of Africa that instigate this voluntary movement. As far as the term “Third World” is concerned, Africa falls in this category, and as a result of this, a majority of the countries in Africa are categorized as underdeveloped. And the reasons for this are as follows;
- Low Wages and Salaries: One of the major reasons for this exodus is poor wages and salaries. In a place like Nigeria with a population of approximately 180,000,000 individuals living in a country where job opportunities are lower than the masses. So if anyone stumbles “luckily” on a job, he or she is expected to earn something small at the end of the month.
- Poor and Unsatisfiable Living Conditions: When people living in a particular geographical location do not enjoy the environment they find themselves, relocation is inevitable.
- Haphazard Utilization of Qualified Personnel: This entails that the best brains in Africa are not regarded or valued for what they know or contribute. People with higher degrees work in abysmal conditions. And people with inventory ideas and innovations are treated badly. This has been one of the major causes of African Diaspora in America.
- Lack of the Spirit of Research and Research Facilities: When the facilities or instruments that are supposed to help students or scientists in their research projects are crude or absent, moving out to where they can fully utilize their potentials becomes the available option.
- The Decline in The Quality of Educational System: a poor educational system is one of the major reason for this exodus. Low education rates in Africa is the lack of adequate schooling facilities and unequal opportunity for education across countries. Many schools across Africa find it difficult to employ teachers due to the low pay and lack of suitable people. This is particularly a fact for schools in rural areas. Most people who manage to receive education would prefer to move to big cities or even overseas where more opportunities and higher pay await. Thus, there will be an overly large class size and a high average number of students per teacher in a school.
- Discrimination in Appointment for Employment: This act is on a rampage in Africa, where jobs are given based on relationship or “godfatherism”. It is so obvious that if you don’t know a “big man” or have a connection with a person of a higher authority that could recommend you will mean little or no chance of getting employed. So this discrepancy has triggered a lot of cross-overs to the greener pastures.
- Issues of Bad Governance and Corruption: Africa has been noted over the years to be a continent where countries in it carry out infringement on human rights and poor living in all ramifications which include; lack of quality education (earlier mentioned), bad economy, money embezzlement, unstable power supply, poor infrastructures, poor social amenities, uneven distribution of wealth, bad roads, theft, terrorism, internal and intertribal crisis, poor management of international funds and so on.
2. External Pull Factors: This is just the opposite of the Internal Pushy-Factors. These are the developments seen in the Western World (greener pastures) that enables the African Diaspora in America. It is a major evidence that the Western World is termed “developed” in the sense that it is proved by the standard of living enjoyed by the citizens. It is nothing of argument that everybody on the surface of the earth desires to live in Utopia! And as such, the following best explains this;
- Higher Salary or Wages and Standard of Living: The joy of working and being paid hourly, and if you exceed your stipulated work hours, you get an extra pay, can send someone to the moon! In the Western World, such environment is provided for her workers. And of course, most of the university professors in Africa, especially in Nigeria, prefer being called abroad to lecture in their schools because they know how awesome their pay cheque is. People from African countries dare to even pass through deserts, oceans, and so on just to gain access to abroad. A lot do it illegally to show you there are many opportunities out there compared to what is seen in Africa. People in the Western World enjoy a good standard of living, that is the reason why you see more migrants in Africa.
- Favorable Working Conditions: This applies to the work schedules, which can permit a citizen working in different places and choosing the time off work.
- Readily Available Research Grants: These are donations that are allocated to certain departments to carry out a research work in school. In the UK it is known as Small Grants; fund programmes of activities that enables researchers to build professional networks, develop new research agendas and increase the efficiency of work. With a kind of programme, the exodus effect is activated!
- Modern and Advanced Technology: The Western World is noted over many centuries to possess or be in control of sophisticated technological developments. And because of this, many migrants in Africa choose to spend their entire lives in order to enjoy this modern equipment.
- Qualitative Educational System: With this notion, you can actually point out the reason why most students in Africa choose to study abroad instead of home. Their education system is more sophisticated the ones seen in Africa.
- Transparency, Hard Work, and Intellectual Freedom: Intellectual freedom embodies the freedom to hold, receive and disseminate ideas without restriction. People naturally, wants to enjoy seeing their ideas accepted and cherished. So in an environment where such practice is held in high esteem, people will throng there. This has been some of the issues why Africans prefer practicing Western culture to their own.
In reality, African governments have only two choices; either to accelerate the entrenchment of democracy and integration of the continent while embarking on a development policy of public expenditures on education, health and other socials and economic infrastructure which would create jobs (the basis of economic growth) and retain Africa’s best brains, or continue down the path of appealing for more foreign aid and pursuing policies that will increase the exodus movement which is a bad omen for economic downturn.
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