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Identities on the Move

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Edited By Flocel Sabaté

This book contains selected papers from the meetings «To think the Identity» and «Identities on the move» held in the Institute for Research into Identities and Society (University of Lleida) during 2010. The aim is to understand the reasons that allow social cohesion throughout the creation of identities and its adaptation. Identity is individual and collective, momentary and secular, apparently contradictory terms that can only coexist and fructify if they entail a constant adaptation. Thus, in a changing world, the identities are always on the move and the continuity of society requires a permanent move. Values, Culture, Language and History show the societies in permanent evolution, and demand an interdisciplinary perspective for studying. Attending this scope, outstanding historians, sociologists, linguistics and scientists offer here a diachronic and interdisciplinary approach to this phenomenon: how men and women have been combining the identity and the move in order to feel save into a social life from Middle Ages to current days, and how different items, in our present society, built the framework of identities.
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Multi-culturalism or Many-colours-ism The ‘Colours’ of the Presidents Obama and Khama: Maria Saur

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Maria SAUR

University of London

Shortly after I arrived in Kachikau a small town called “a village” in Northern Botswana / Southern Africa, I was “put in charge” of all children considered to be of so-called mixed heritage “because they were white like me” so I was told. I smiled then, the “I know better”, arrogant smile. Today I know they were right – these children were just as white as President Obama is black.

The USA pride themselves in having their first black President – although he is just as white as he is black given his ancestry and heritage. In short why is Obama black? Why does he mostly describe himself as such? Why does the non-silent majority agree with him?

Although President Obama himself and most of his compatriots perceive him to be their first black President I will show that this is not the case everywhere. He is seen as white in many – less vocal – parts of the world; white as all people having his skin tone and of mixed origin are perceived there. The President of Botswana Ian Khama for example, who like President Obama has an Anglo-Saxon mother and an African father, is seen by many Batswana (the people of Botswana) to be the “first white African President” of their black African country. Some therefore fear he might be destroying their culture.

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