Undertaking the Daughters’ Mission

from Rosetta E. Ross

When The Daughters of the African Atlantic Fund Corporation organized in 2013 it set before itself a broad agenda of connecting the academic community in which most of the founders were situated with the vision that women descended from Africa might live into a future of safety, creativity, freedom, and boldness without penalty. Deliberation over the organization’s name and settling on the importance of “African Atlantic” reflects our understanding that realities impacting the bodies and minds of Africa’s global daughters has everything to do with the intersection of gender, the invented category race, and the mercantile passages of people between the African continent and elsewhere, by way of the Atlantic Ocean.

Whether it is the never resolved kidnapping of school girls from Chibok town in Borno State, Nigeria; or the abusive handling of a teenager (Shakara) at Spring Valley High School in Columbia, South Carolina; or the tenure, promotion, and salary games in our various institutions; or verbally attacking the First Lady for mentioning “racial disparities”; or the reality of human trafficking and disproportionate representation of black girls in this tragedy – intersectionality affects the bodies and minds of Africa’s daughters.

At the same time, we are well aware of the awfully privileged position we hold as persons whose lived realities allow us to choose whether we will give our time and energy to creating and developing an organization such as this one. Our vision, while broad enough to include ourselves, arises from recognizing the discursive relationship of scholarship and learning to realities we sometimes write about, sometimes think about, and sometimes ignore.

To begin responding to these realities, The Daughters will award two to three small scholarships this fiscal year.

We invite you to join us in envisioning and realizing partnerships that connect our critical and creative thinking to organizations providing micro-grants and micro-loans to enable self-sufficiency; scholarships that make acquiring an education a reality; relief support that makes leaving abusive homes possible; conferences that allow conversation and learning across African Atlantic geographies; and more.