I-6. The Creole World and Creoles of Africa

Convener: Vladimir A. Popov (St. Petersburg State University, Russia); e-mail:

Creoles, or Crioles, Crioulo, Kriolu, Kriо – the ethnic (often ethnoracial) communities of the mixed origin formed during the colonial period, mainly in America, Africa and Asia. They differ in the origin from the population of mother countries, indigenous people and later immigrants of the 19th–20th centuries. Now problems of Creole communities, Creole cultures and Creole languages – in the center of attention of anthropologists, ethnographers, demographers, specialists in folklore, linguists and even political strategists. It occurs not only in those countries where Creole communities and their cultures play a significant role in social processes. In a number of countries of Western Europe and the USA these researches have both a theoretical and practical orientation, in connection with finding solutions to the internal problems connected with modeling and regulation of social processes in multinational societies and serious problems of the relations with Diasporas. Being a specific form and result of cultural interaction, the Creole perspective is extremely important within development of dialogue of cultures during a globalization era. Besides, the tendentious ideologized historical researches in which the complex of the communities united by the African origin on both sides of the Atlantic Ocean is treated as some kind of civilization take place. The theory of “a Yoruba transatlantic complex” concerns to those (or yorubanidade mundializada – “the world Yoruba identity”). Such alternative approaches arise among the African and Latin American scientists and are interesting as the fact of history of science and a scientific mythologization. The declared section will be devoted to discussion of results of researches of the most urgent problems of the Creole world, first of all identification of ethnocultural, ethnosocial and ethnolinguistic factors of genesis and regularities of historical development of Creole communities of Africa and Latin America, and also cross-cultural researches of development of Creoles of Sierra Leone, Angola, Cape Verde, American Liberians, Cape Malayans, Mauritians and Afro-Brazilians. The analysis of specifics of various forms of social and kinship institutes and the importance of a confessional factor in integration of Creole societies (Islam in South Africa, Kandomblé in Brazil), and also concepts of racial democracy in the state ideology is supposed: reflections, a mythologization, political correctness (on the example of Brazil) and the so-called “Creole syndrome”.