What is Africanness is a dialogue on the subject of who is African and what is African. My aim is mainly twofold: first to implicate a reductive sameness, which I call ‘nativism’, in the naming of Africans and show its teleology and effects and second, to offer an alternative understanding of how Africans can be named or can name themselves. Above all, I develop an epistemology for constructing the hermeneutics of Africannness today, long after the primal colonial moment and its debasing racialising ideology. I build my thesis on discursively interrogating the making of Africa in colonial discourses and, more particularly, the making of an African race and African culture(s) and sexuality(ies) in ways that are not just historically conscious but also have a heuristic capacity to contest nativism from the outside as well as from within.
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