The multidirectionality of Romani identity in Damian Le Bas' The Stopping Places

Title: The multidirectionality of Romani identity in Damian Le Bas' The Stopping Places
Source document: Brno studies in English. 2022, vol. 48, iss. 2, pp. 159-176
  • ISSN
    0524-6881 (print)
    1805-0867 (online)
Type: Article
The romanticised and stereotyped construction of the Romani people absorbed by mainstream society has contributed to the obliteration of their cultural complexity and their ensuing alienation. The present article analyses how the memoir The Stopping Places (2018), by the British Romani writer Damian Le Bas, makes a case for the borderlessness of his people. It is the main purpose of this study to underscore Romani identity as inherently multidirectional, hence allowing for a relational, intercultural dialogue aimed at transcending the long-standing Romani vs. non-Romani tension. For this purpose, Le Bas' network-like journey across some key stopping places is read as an endorsement of the synchronicity and interconnectedness characterising our present world. His narrative is an empowering attestation that foregrounds the fruitful interactions between the Roma and other cultures and sets the assumedly distrustful and protective Romani as an example of cultural flexibility.
  • Research funds for the completion of this article have been provided by the Spanish Ministry of Science, Innovation and Universities (PID2021-124841NB-I00). The author is also thankful for the support of the Government of Aragón (H03_20R).
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