Title: Routes of Roots Grounded in Multiple Diasporas: A Sociohistorical Perspective of Family and Identity in Caribbean Family History
Stream: Sexuality, Gender, Families
Presentation Type: Oral Presentation
Melsia Tomlin-Kraftner, Bournemouth University, United Kingdom
Family history can lead one down the path of finding ancestors one would never dream of finding and these discoveries either shape identity positively or reveal unreversible skeletons in the cupboards.
No matter where the people of the Caribbean came from, it involved fighting, pain, sweat, death, grief, tears, and survival of the fittest. Engaging an autoethnographic study of the sociohistorical pages of one family’s complicated and intriguing ancestry, highlighted common themes running through the veins of Caribbean people’s ancestors, from enslaved Africans /Creoles, stolen Irish & Scottish children, Scottish Border Reivers, British/Scottish soldiers, Jews banished from Spain/Portugal through the Spanish Inquisition or all together for Jamaicans with their motto ‘Out of Many ONE People.’
The objective is to understand the intersections of multiple diasporas in multi-ethnic Black Jamaican families taken from two parishes, to examine aspects of slave society, colonial life, and how that impacted on the genealogical study, lineage, and identity, within a consanguineous kin clan from Jamaica. The research question focused on how mixed-heritage people traversed the colonial terrain of slave society, and especially women’s contribution to developing that society. The results highlighted a slave society where mixed-heritage women were rational socioeconomic actors and matriarchal responsibilities carried through to the Windrush period, to today’s society. This presentation through an academic autoethnographic journey triangulated DNA testing, prosopography, historical research, genealogical research and ‘word of mouth’ stories from the matriarchs and patriarchs of the family. This study of ancestors has unlocked the core elements of identity, will-power, and self-preservation.
Conference Comments & FeedbackPlace a comment using your LinkedIn profile
Share this Presentation