Exiled: Activism, Identity and the African National Congress of South Africa in Sweden
This postdoctoral research project seeks to alter and better our understanding of exile activists by investigating the connections between individual activists’ personal and political experiences. It will examine the lives of exiled political activists in Sweden in the late 20th century through a combination of oral history and biographical research methods, and using a gender theory lens to examine how everyday experiences impact political activism.
The key focus of the project is the history of the ANC in Sweden, which was a vital benefactor in the struggle against apartheid and the exile location for hundreds of ANC activists. By locating the ANC in exile in a Swedish context, this project will investigate how exile experiences depend on locality: the mission is to understand how Sweden shaped activists as well as how the ANC’s presence impacted Swedish policy towards southern Africa.
The project has a particular focus on the recovery of everyday life stories, exploring the intersection between individual, everyday lives and the organisational constraint and structural forces that impact on them. By listening to these voices and personal experiences, we can better understand exile activism and the creation of diaspora identities.