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Podcasting and the African diaspora in the United States
AuthorApiyo, Robert Otieno
AdvisorStavitsky, Alan G.
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ABSTRACT: This study investigates the practices of podcasters who are producing podcasts for English-speaking Africans and African diaspora audiences in the United States. The study focuses on the types of podcast content produced, the target audience, the distribution platforms used, and the motivations of the podcasters who are actively targeting Africans and the African diaspora in the United States. Studies about podcasting have emerged in recent years due to increased academic interest although they have mostly focused on the uses, growth and trends of podcasting. There is very limited research related to podcasting about Africans and the African diaspora in the United States. This paper endeavors to provide insights on the current research, interrogates the connection between podcasters in Africa and the African diaspora in the United States and also includes the researcher’s personal observations, analyses and experiences as a podcaster targeting the same audience. This research applies the method of semi-structured interviews to gather information from participants actively involved in producing content for consumption by the African diaspora. According to the observations, I identified the following motivations for starting a podcast: passion, sense of cultural identity and belonging, filling a gap, social commentary, market trends, personal experiences and inspiration from African authors. These podcasters also target English speakers, young African millennials, public radio listeners, tech-savvy African countries, black women and homeschoolers. The content of the podcasts includes music, African culture, sexuality, politics, relationships, art, homeschooling tips, women empowerment and highlighting the work of African entrepreneurs.