Patrick B. Oray’s 2013 dissertation, “Another layer blackness: theorizing race, ethnicity, identity in U.S. black public sphere,” takes a more granular look at the construction of race in America with particular emphasis on migration and immigration.
Instead of a singular black identity fueled by our political discourses and popular culture, my project treats “blackness” as a floating signifier that is constructed both within the racial organization of the U.S. nation-state and among the peoples of the black diaspora within its borders. In short, blackness is a matter that has become national, international, and transnational in scope.
Read more about how culture and geography among other factors, play a role in Oray’s articulation of race and identity in the U.S. As he points out “Patterns of immigration, return migration and circular migration that […] as well as the circulation of ideas, culture, and history between sending and receiving countries are all issues germane to the process of black immigrant incorporation and black ethnic identity in the U.S.”
Patrick B. Oray. “Another layer of blackness: theorizing race, ethnicity, and identity in the U.S. black public sphere.” PhD (Doctor of Philosophy) thesis, University of Iowa, 2013.