I am Black : confronting Black identities in Zanele Muholi's Somnyama Ngonyama
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I am Black: Confronting Black Identities in Zanele Muholi’s Somnyama Ngonyama considers the ways in which Blackness and Black identities have been formed in the Netherlands, South Africa, and the United States. Using Michal Omi and Howard Winant’s “Racial Formation in the United States” as a framework, this thesis examines five images within Somnyama Ngonyama to explore the complexities of how race is conceptualized in each of these locations through economic, political, and/or cultural “sites.” All three sites have contributed to both the hypervisibility and invisibility of Black people. Through Muholi understanding her Black South African identity and how it operates in different spaces, this thesis argues that Somnyama Ngonyama provides a nuanced, ambivalent perspective of Blackness and Black identity.