Participative Web 2.0 and Second Generation Congolese Youth in Brussels: Social Network Sites, Self-Expression, and Cultural Identity

  • Madly Simba Boumba


Several existing studies on the media consumption of diaspora highlight that the Internet provides diasporas with new spaces for communication, and a new context for thinking of identity and community. Despite the increasing academic interest in the digital diaspora phenomenon, the rapid technological changes such as the introduction of social media, mobile Internet, and participative web 2.0 constitute a fairly new dimension in the study of migration and diasporic communities. This chapter explores the use of social network sites (SNS) by the second generation of the Congolese diaspora in Brussels, especially when it comes to cultural identity and self-expression. Using ethnographic techniques, the study seeks to identify how members of the Congolese youth could reflect upon their cultural identities on SNS. The study finds that SNS are used as entertainment tools (where various cultural elements are presented with humour) and/or as empowering tools (where claims of Congolese identity, cultural change, and self-awareness are expressed). The results of the study indicated that the interaction on SNS helps the Congolese youth in their cultural identification process and feeling of belonging.


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© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Madly Simba Boumba
    • 1
  1. 1.Independent ResearcherBrusselsBelgium

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