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K-State Today

November 20, 2020

Debra Bolton contributes chapter on women in the African diaspora

Submitted by Debra J. Bolton

In a new book critics call "a timely collection crucial for women’s activism in Africa and its diaspora," Debra Bolton recently contributed a chapter in "African Women and Their Networks of Support: Intervening Connections."

From topics that include women-led politics, justice, digital networks, Caribbean women writers and women in the Namibian liberation movement, Bolton wrote the culminating chapter about African women, displaced by conflict in their home countries, who find home and safety in rural southwest Kansas.

The book's editors, Elene Cloete, Martha Ndakalako-Bannikov and Mariah C. Stember, engaged the authors from a variety of research interests and backgrounds to present this array of perspectives to add to the literature in feminist scholarship.

Bolton’s research on the displaced populations in southwest Kansas mainly focused on Garden City and speaks to the challenges of any refugee group, be they economic or political, who have but a short time to integrate to community life. She addresses the women, as leaders, being responsible for sustaining employment, family life, rearing children, addressing health care needs, and assuring refugee and residential status. She attributes their strength, perseverance, and resilience to their success in finding home.

The authors and their editors present updated findings, this week, at the African Association Studies international annual meeting, Nov. 20-22, taking place virtually.

Bolton directs intercultural learning and development in Diversity and Multicultural Student Affairs these past two years. She also serves as ancillary faculty in the geography and geospatial sciences department. Previously, she was an extension specialist based at the Southwest Research and Extension Center, where the bulk of her research took place.

The book, "African Women and Their Networks of Support: Intervening Connections," is now available for purchase.

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