chapter  6
Griots, roots and identity in the African diaspora
ByHauke Dorsch
Pages 15

Recent discussions in anthropology about the concept of diaspora are theoretically interesting but lack empirical studies. This article aims to provide some ethnographic information about the African diaspora. It uncovers the role of a West African group of professional traditional musicians and historians for the construction of African migrants’ identities as well as for African-American reconstructions of lost ‘roots’ in Africa. These historians and musicians serve as a common symbol linking different layers of the African diaspora.