Essay about Textual Sources Of The African Diaspora

1840 Words Nov 1st, 2016 8 Pages
Introduction
Textual sources are staples of academic evidence that help analyze and piece together historical narratives, they these sources have a major limitation. This limitation is that textual sources cannot produce as strong of emotions for readers compared to non-textual sources. For example, the murder of Emmett Till is painful moment from the Civil Rights Movements that is difficult to grasp from the description alone. However, when you view photos of Till’s beaten and bloated corps, you are overcome with sadness and rage, questioning how humans can be so callous. These reactions highlight the power of non-textual sources: the ability to create an emotional response. Tina Campt described this emotional response as “affect”, or “something that cannot be fully realized in language” or what makes “feeling feel” (15). Photographs/drawings, music and film serve as non-written form of language that engage affect. Non-textual sources of the African diaspora have engaged affect in various forms, but violence is one of its most prevalent. Throughout the diaspora, white supremacists used violence as a hindrance to resistance movements, by instilling fears of assault and death into Black people. Yet, these same acts of violence served to pacific white fear of Black resistance, helped promoted the maintenance of white supremacy. This essay uses three guiding question to demonstrate how non-textual sources convey moments of the suppression of Black agency. These questions…

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