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Being Black, Being British, Being Ghanaian: Second Generation Ghanaians, Class, Identity, Ethnicity and Belonging

Twumasi-Ankrah, Yvette; (2019) Being Black, Being British, Being Ghanaian: Second Generation Ghanaians, Class, Identity, Ethnicity and Belonging. Doctoral thesis (Ph.D), UCL (University College London). Green open access

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Yvette Twumasi-Ankrah PhD Thesis - Final inc impact statement April 2019.pdf - Published version

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Abstract

This thesis focuses on the intersection between class and ethnic identity among second-generation Ghanaians. I explore how middle-class second generation Ghanaians construct and maintain (if they do at all) their ethnic identity and the role of class in its construction. For my participants, their narratives engage with the role of education as the driver for social mobility, the issues of belonging to the host nation as a visible minority, explorations on how their ethnic identity is linked to their socio-economic identity and how they create a space in both the cultures. There is very little written about this long-settled community and indeed about middle-class identity and ethnicity in general. The study engages with the literature on diaspora, race and racism and the intersection between ethnicity and class. My research interrogates this statement and focuses on people born of Ghanaian parentage who have been raised in England. Drawing on a semi-structured thematic interview approach, I spoke to 21 participants aged 27-41. The study finds that the role of education and family is key to the development of the participants. It was clear that for my participants their class identity had little impact on their chosen ethnic identity. For the majority, as they matured, the need to engage more with their Ghanaian identity manifested. I argue that being perceived as ‘Other’, experiencing racism, prejudice and microaggressions led the majority to dis-identify with being ‘English’, but, for some, being seen as an outsider in Ghana meant they felt they did not belong there either. In response, many constructed an identity based on their understanding of a Ghanaian identity and their experiences as part of the second generation in the UK.

Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Qualification: Ph.D
Title: Being Black, Being British, Being Ghanaian: Second Generation Ghanaians, Class, Identity, Ethnicity and Belonging
Event: UCL (University College London)
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Language: English
Additional information: Copyright © The Author 2019. Original content in this thesis is licensed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International (CC BY-NC 4.0) Licence (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/). Any third-party copyright material present remains the property of its respective owner(s) and is licensed under its existing terms. Access may initially be restricted at the author’s request.
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education > UCL Institute of Education
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education > UCL Institute of Education > IOE - Education, Practice and Society
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10071933
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