What is Diaspora? – Definition & Meaning – Video & Lesson …

Posted By on February 11, 2022

From the Greek word meaning 'to scatter,' a diaspora is defined as a community of people who do not live in their country of origin, but maintain their heritage in a new land. Many of you can probably relate to this issue, since you've got ancestral roots from one country but reside in a different place. For instance, in the United States, a plethora of ethnic communities exist. Americans can be classified according to sub-cultures, such as African-American, Mexican-American, Irish-American, and Indian-American. Inclusion of emigrants, or people who have left their homelands to settle permanently in a different one, is a major characteristic of a diaspora.

You may also hear the term 'dispersion,' which is a requirement for diaspora to exist. Dispersion refers to a movement away from a particular space, like the petals of a dandelion blowing in the wind. Thus, you can imagine that, due to dispersion, people form transnational communities in which members are committed to restoring homeland values. For instance, Jewish people living outside the land of Israel constitute a well-known example of a diaspora.

Consequently, diasporas have been associated with loss and exile--two words that denote suffering and tragedy. Another group of people--the Africans--were forced to move away from their homelands because of slavery in colonial America. Hence, a multitude of diasporas have occurred globally due to religious, social, political, economic, and even natural forces. These forces can range anywhere from violent revolutions to massive earthquakes--essentially anything that disrupts the normal flow of life.

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What is Diaspora? - Definition & Meaning - Video & Lesson ...

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