African Diaspora: A Global Impact
What is the African diaspora?
The African diaspora is over 170 million people of African descent that live all over the world. The African diaspora is represented across the continents with approximately 39 million in North America, 113 million in Latin America 14 million in the Caribbean and 4 million in Europe. People of the African diaspora have diverse connections to Africa and varying narratives of how they arrived at their current homes. The African Union defines the African diaspora as people of African origin living outside of the continent, irrespective of their citizenship and nationality, and who are willing to contribute to the development of the continent and the building of the African Union.
The African diaspora’s connection to Africa
Some members of the African diaspora were born in Africa and have left the continent to pursue education and employment opportunities in other countries. Many members return to Africa after living abroad to work and invest in building Africa’s economy and well-being. It is estimated that 10 - 15 million Africans were taken and dispersed throughout the Americas, Caribbean, Latin America during the Trans-Atlantic slave trade.
Their descendants have African roots and are members of the African diaspora. Ghana’s president, Nana Akufo-Addo declared 2019 as the Year of Return to commemorate the 400th anniversary of the arrival of African slaves in America. Nana Akufo-Addo invited the descendants of Africans that were enslaved in the Americas to return home and re-connect to their African roots. Over 300 thousand more people traveled to Ghana than prior years and participated in festivals, seminars and other experiences over the 12 months. Ghana declared 2020 as Beyond the Return and continues to encourage members of the African diaspora to return home to Africa to visit, invest and learn.
The African diaspora is making a global impact
Africa and the African diaspora has and continues to make a global impact on culture and society around the world. Music, food, art, sports, architecture, science, business, agriculture are just a few of the industries that the impact and influence of Africa and the African diaspora can be seen. As the world gets smaller with the expansion of the internet and Africa and the African diaspora gets stronger and more impactful the influence on commerce and culture will continue to expand.