The concrete and abstract geographies of difference on the African continent not only arise from environmental, socio-cultural and religious factors but also from the historical and differential impacts and experiences of colonization and its legacies. In this paper, we use the web series, An African City, as a reference point, to examine the troubling nature of binary depictions of a colonial/traditional Africa and a new/modern/global Africa. Relying on Postcolonial feminist methodologies of critique and deconstruction, we propose that in countering such simplistic narratives, Africa ought to be seen as constructed, abstract, material, plural and confusing in order to account for its complexities. In particular, we focus on the centrality of women to African identity discourses. We argue that while Afropolitan and Africa rising discourses simultaneously challenge and interrupt problematic colonial constructions of Africa as backward and in need of salvation, they also (perhaps more problematically) still re-centre the West as the progenitor of progress, thereby reiterating the colonial tale.

Africa rising, afropolitanism, class, deconstruction, Postcolonial, women
African Identities
Pauline Jewett Institute of Women's and Gender Studies

Bawa, S. (Sylvia), & Ogunyankin, G.A. (2018). (Un)African women: identity, class and moral geographies in postcolonial times. African Identities, 1–16. doi:10.1080/14725843.2018.1474340