Black bodies, Black queens, and the Black sisterhood on social media: perspectives from young African women in Australia

Claire Moran, Virginia Mapedzahama

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

African Australian diasporic literature has drawn attention to the highly racialised experiences that Black African women encounter living in bodies that are raced as Black in Australia. Within their (in)visibility and ‘otherness’–they are looked upon in suspicion and yet also ignored, silenced and excluded. Their bodies are involuntarily marked as ‘deficit’ and ‘deviant’, resulting in disadvantage, alienation, and non-belonging. Through the theoretical lens of (in)visibility, we centre the racialisation of the Black African body as crucial to the digital practices that young Black African women in Australia engage in on social media. In drawing on a multi-method approach involving social media ethnography, the ‘scroll-back’ interview method, and sustained, ongoing dialogues on social media, this article explores the everyday social media practices of nine young Black African women in Australia. The findings indicate that social media is used to visibilise and (re)claim contemporary Black African womanhood, amongst a global digitally mediated community of Black African women. These, Black female-centred empowerment digital communities are important spaces in which young Black African women in Australia can unlearn, resist, and reject the harmful racialised ideologies that they have endured (and continue to endure) in white Australia.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1328-1355
Number of pages28
JournalJournal of Youth Studies
Volume26
Issue number10
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2023

Keywords

  • Australia
  • Black African women
  • digital platforms
  • social media
  • youth

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