From Diaspora to Digital Diaspora

Maya Bechi, M.Ed
3 min readSep 16

The Role of Organized Religion in African American Civil Rights Activism

I want to dive into a journey through history, exploring the concept of diaspora, the emergence of digital diaspora, and how organized religion has played a role in the quest for civil rights and resources for African Americans over the past two centuries. There is a necessary debate within the black community about the benefits and harm of assimilating to non African religions, so as controversial as it may be, I want to do my best to set a singular focus on a specific segment of church history that elevated resilience, strength, and the power of community.

Defining Diaspora

First things first, what exactly is a diaspora? A diaspora is a term used to describe the dispersion or scattering of a particular group of people from their ancestral homeland. Throughout history, numerous diasporas have occurred due to various factors such as migration, forced displacement, or economic opportunities. One of the most notable diasporas in history is the African diaspora, which saw millions of Africans forcibly brought to the Americas during the transatlantic slave trade.

The Birth of Digital Diaspora

Fast forward to the 21st century, and we’re witnessing the evolution of diaspora into the digital realm. Digital diaspora refers to the global dispersion of people who connect and maintain their cultural identity, heritage, and communities through digital technologies, like social media and online forums. This phenomenon has opened up new avenues for people to connect, share stories, and support one another across geographical boundaries.

The Role of Organized Religion

Now, let’s turn our attention to the role of organized religion in the African American experience. For centuries, churches have served as not just places of worship but also as hubs for community organizing and advocacy. African American churches, in particular, have played a significant role in the struggle for civil rights and access to resources. The benefit or harm done to the culture of Africans in America by missionaries and religion remains an important discussion, however, the utilization of organized meetings has lent itself historically as a shroud for conversations and strategic…

Maya Bechi, M.Ed

Perfectly imperfect. A myriad of musings, research and writings prove it.