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Root Work Journal - Convening in the Ark - Volume 1, Issue 1

Be Here Now: The South is a Portal

Sara Makeba Daise, MA

Charles Joyner Institute for Gullah and African Diaspora Studies 




A queer Black girl re-imagines the South Carolina lowcountry as a portal for the fusion of Africana (Gullah Geechee) and Indigenous identity, spirituality, resistance, and ways of knowing. An estimated 40-60% of enslaved Africans entered America through the Charleston, SC port; their descendants’ cultural continuity resulting in the evolution of Gullah Geechee culture. What wealth of knowledge can we uncover when we consider South Carolina -- the 2nd richest slave state in the nation, and the birthplace of the Secession -- as a portal, and convergence point of Africana and Indigenous knowledge, ways of being, magic, and possibility? Interpreting the lived experiences of Africana and Indigenous people in South Carolina, through Afrofuturist and Womanist/Black Feminist lenses transform ideas about The South, who we are, and what we are capable of.

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