Angle and Aims

Angle: The ‘‘Second-Generation’’ Immigrant (OXYMORON): ‘‘a child of first-immigrant parents who were born in one country but relocated to another.’’ Oxymoron: as the child in question has been born into one country, in our case Great Britain, but has parents native to another country, in our case Zambia. Therefore, is not an immigrant but a British national. However, still seen as having ‘‘immigrant status’’? This sense of ambiguity is interesting to explore as it calls into questions notions of national identity, heritage and the very definition of immigrant itself. Chibeza was fine with us exploring this angle as she said although she is not actually an immigrant, due to her race and her family’s association with Africa she often feels foreign or ‘‘other’’. This informed our questions. Her response to many of our questions bolsters this sense of ambiguity surrounding national identity and heritage, especially as her parents are first-generation immigrants: ‘‘I’m a British national but when people ask me where I’m from they rarely want to know whether I’m from London! So I would also say I’m Zambian despite no longer having a Zambian passport.’’

Aims of Our Portfolio: How does a ‘‘second-generation’’ immigrant identify with themselves? Does a ‘‘second-generation’’ immigrant feel any tensions between their heritage and a new found dual-nationality? What are the feelings towards the multiculturalism debate in Britain? We used Chibeza’s own personal experience to gain an insight into these universal socio-political questions. Immigration in Britain is part of our history as a nation but remains
Postcolonial Portfolio Zambia & Great Britain 15.1.14
a highly contemporary issue in today’s politics, and so our project aims to gain a small insight into the complexity of this issue.

Jack Bowen and Laura Hunt

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