Their Songs of Exile, Their Drums of Loss: On (Un)translatable Odysseys MAYA G. VINUESA 145
MAYA G. VINUESA Their Songs of Exile, Their Drums of Loss1: On (Un)translatable Odysseys2 1. Africans, African Caribbeans in Britain: Diaspora and literature Africans continue to arrive on European coasts... not always by choice, as the continuing history of economic relations between North and South, Europe and Africa force people every year to leave their homes in Senegal, Nigeria, Liberia, Mali and many other countries to land in the UK, France, Spain, Germany, Italy and various parts of Europe. As López Rodríguez (2009) points out, Africans in Europe and European Afrodescendants have arrived from Africa, from the Caribbean, from North and South America and they do not share a common language, history, ethnicity or culture. Some of them have been living in Europe for centuries, most migrated or were born here in the second half of the 20th century, many are arriving on a daily basis, making of the image of cayucos and pateras a recurring headline in the news. Whether many white Europeans like it or not, she adds, from Russia to the Mediterranean, Afrosporic communities have become rooted on European soil, and their presence, even if statistically minoritary, is still rather visible at all levels of our variegated societies. Being much less homo- 1 Verses from Nichols (2005: 13). 2 I wish to thank Sharmilla Beezmohun for sharing her ideas about the links be- tween contemporary afrosporic writing and the Black British literary tradition, including unpublished ideas about Linton Kwesi Johnson’s poetry and challeng- es...
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