By Dominic Pasura (auth.)
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Extra info for African Transnational Diasporas: Fractured Communities and Plural Identities of Zimbabweans in Britain
For instance, from 2005 to 2009 Australia recruited 1,180 health professionals from Zimbabwe (Hawthorne, 2010). Analysing the 2006 Australian Census, Lucas et al. (2011) observe that between 2001 and 2006 the Zimbabwe-born population in Australia nearly doubled. , 2011). But as Lucas et al. (2011) argue, the figures are a gross under-estimation of the scale of the movement because the majority of Zimbabweans emigrating to Australia were not Zimbabwe-born and, therefore, not captured in the census.
Moreover, a diaspora only becomes a diaspora at the moment of relocation, rather than being formed at the point of displacement (Clifford, 1994). This differentiates diaspora from broad transnationalism as conceptualized by Levitt (2001), as 18 African Transnational Diasporas encompassing even those who stayed behind, non-migrants. But as Faist (2010, p. 33) warns us, ‘one may debate endlessly about the exact status of diaspora and transnationalism as so-called dance partners’. A framework for understanding African diasporas Diasporas in the contemporary world are defined by their participation in transnational practices and activities (Bakewell, 2008).
Although the majority of diasporas are formed from traumatic experiences, the book consistently argues that diasporas can be formed even if their origins are not catastrophic. As Chapter 2 will show, Zimbabweans migrated to Britain using different strategies such as the ancestral route, student route, asylum route and work-permit route. Social scientists need to African Transnational Diasporas: Theoretical Perspectives 27 deconstruct and problematize these bureaucratic categories formulated by nation-states, rather than using them as a basis for defining diaspora.