Thursday, September 1, 2011
On the Psychology of Diasporas
On the Psychology of Diasporas: In the postmodern West, we collectively struggle with the idea of homelessness, especially as it pertains to nationhood. Those who, by historical chance, ended up in lands far away from their true homeland are often subjected to intense ethnoracial scrutiny. Perhaps nationalism is to blame or maybe we need to reevaluate fundamentally the meaning of "citizenship." Yet it is the perverted notions of human dignity such as racism and ethnocentrism which push people to foster unruly mechanisms of exclusion and abandonment. The pseudo-romantic idea that our peoples were somehow better off in their original homelands will be challenged by any postmodern understanding of the past. You ultimately have no original homeland on Earth. As Nietzsche once stated, "Woe, when you feel homesick for the land as if it had offered more freedom - and there is no longer any land." The postmodern condition is currently eroding any ideas of racial purity from our collective unconscious. Today we are told NOT to think in terms of race, ethnicity, nationality, religion, gender, and class because each concept only breeds injustice, inequality, and intolerance. But we MUST continue to think in those terms precisely because they help us identify, and even rectify, the injustice, inequality, and intolerance of yesterday.