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Maya Angela Smith’s book, Senegal Abroad, awarded MLA’s Aldo and Jeanne Scaglione Prize

December 18, 2020

Affiliate faculty Maya Angela Eipe Smith’s book, Senegal Abroad: Linguistic Borders, Racial Formations, and Diasporic Imaginaries, is a winner of The Modern Language Association’s  Aldo and Jeanne Scaglione Prize for French and Francophone Studies.

Her volume explores the fascinating role of language in national, transnational, postcolonial, racial, and migrant identities. Drawing on extensive interviews with people of Senegalese heritage, Maya Angela Smith contends that they are notable in their capacity for movement and in their multifaceted approach to speech, shaping their identity as they purposefully switch between languages and structure. Offering a mix of poignant, funny, reflexive, introspective, and witty stories, Senegal Abroad blurs the lines between the utility and pleasure of language, allowing a more nuanced understanding of why and how Senegalese move.

Maya is an affiliate JSIS faculty in the Latin American and Caribbean Studies and African Studies Programs, and previously served on the Center for Global Studies Executive Committee.