My black is better than yours - On being a dignified "African" woman

I shared a Facebook post about the "African-Americans ain't *#%$ " narrative in diaspora convos. At a conference a peer ceased interest in me when he learned that I wasn't South African but a "regular black girl from NY" Here's what people are saying.

  1. I love my black people everywhere but when I hear these sentiments, I just tell them I've been to Africa and while its a great place, they have nothing to brag about. And for the really arrogant, just ask them why are they in America getting over on our forefathers efforts?
  2. What you said Jamal Bradley is nothing but the truth, I've had to tell more then a few. You're here because my granny fought for you to be.
  3. explaining that i'm mostly #regularblack is a dreaded pastime
  4. It's Caribbean's, Africans, Central American, South American it's just the most perplexing thing. At the end of the day we are a marginalized people GLOBALLY occupying the lowest ends of the economic spectrum.
  5. I can say sooooo much about the whole U.S. Black experience and it not being part of the Diaspora and all kinds of other stuff but I'll save for talk over some drinks.
  6. *Claps loudly* I have had this chat with Margaret Gso & you Cherae. Appreciate this thread. However, I shun at the term "regular black" and "just black." there is nothing regular about my black. Greatness came before us, we are not to be undermined by anything "regular" imo. Hugs to you all! Despite the hang-ups, i am in love with our blackness world-wide.
  7. oh my wordddd! But this thread cant end here!!
  8. Cherae!!!! YES girl you have said it all with this post. Ive been sooo tired of this undertone. If it werent for African Americans, no other type of black or brown person could come to this country and thrive. But no...we are the scum at the bottom of the barrel. Over it!
  9. and i've gotten more than a few ignorant comments about the origins of my name and how "you people just make up names"
  10. On the flip side though Cherae Robinson and Margaret, African Americans can be very ignorant of Black experiences outside of the U.S. and perpetuate U.S. Black American hegemonic narratives upon Diasporan Blackness.
  11. I'm late! But ditto to all that has been said.the perception of black Americans as these agents of pathology in what many perceive as America, the great land of opportunity...that somehow we've succumb to violence, poverty, and disregard for free edu...See More
  12. Shantrelle Patrice Lewis the miseducation of the black experience is the root of all proverbial evil in my book. I have a very good relationship with a fairly high ranking Nigerian diplomat in the US and I cherish the "real talk city" conversations we are able to have about this whole idea. There is a HUGE lack of knowledge to go around. I remember learning that South Africa had the equivalent of HBCU's during apartheid and being totally surprised by this in a road trip to Lesotho. The one thing that frightens me is that there aren't enough people that see undoing this as critical to the progress of the whole.
  13. I'm just gonna add my story too (since we are reveling in our oral history traditions), I had to grit my teeth last year when I was meeting with the Nigerian Ambassador to #Poland when he in not so few words insisted that African Americans should be thankful for the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade because we were able to "escape" Africa. I needed a visa to Nigeria, so I didn't counter. :( #realtalk
  14. I know right?! The more I travel throughout the Diaspora, the prouder I am to be a U.S. African American, tied to a specific history with this landmass and all of the cultural productions that grew as a result of our overcoming oppression here AND the Black Privilege (yes I said it) that we have experienced as a result of it.
  15. Kali thank you for that. While I see your point and understand why some might be uncomfortable with my term, I use "regular Black" to describe myself very deliberately (and with a bit of humor). When I've said it -when I say it- my point is to make the other uncomfortable while at the same time confirming/affirming my Blackness -and ultimately 'our' sameness. I'm actually a regular African.
  16. I've always hated the "you're not like them" sweet talk. It's always the people living with their own shameless brand of comfortable prejudice that are really in need of development work.
  17. And this new thing where Africans are feeling some type of way about Lupita being referred to as the 7th African American woman to win an Oscar.... oi vey!
  18. AGAIN, there would be no African reaping any benefit in this country if it weren't for The African Americans struggle, how we conveniently choose to ignore that fact bewilders me! Ironically and thankfully Lupita thanking the spirit of Patsey.
  19. It should also be noted that most Africans both inside America and on the continent are very kind and feel no such resentment or racism (yes even from black folk the concept exists). And as Cherae Robinson, pointed out in her relationship with the Nigerian diplomats family, many are simply down to earth and decent people. #marriedtoaSwahiliKenyan10yrs and #currentlylivinginKenya
  20. Kate Bomz, "Ironically and thankfully Lupita thanking the spirit of Patsey.", this wrapped everything up for me in a nice little bow. It was such a poignant reminder of our oneness...our togetherness...our peopleness.
  21. *Claps loudly* I have had this chat with Margaret Gso & you Cherae. Appreciate this thread. However, I shun at the term "regular black" and "just black." there is nothing regular about my black. Greatness came before us, we are not to be undermined by anything "regular" imo. Hugs to you all! Despite the hang-ups, i am in love with our blackness world-wide.
  22. You have had unique experiences Cherae. You have traveled to so many places and were able to learn about and appreciate other cultures. People are so IGNORANT. I can't tell you how many times I got called an "African booty scratcher". I didn't even know what that meannt the first time someone said it to me. I still don't know lolol. I'm not going to speak for all Africans who immigrated to the US, but my first experience with African Americans was HORRIBLE. I didn't make African American friends until I went to Morgan. All my close friends in high school were African or West Indians since their culture is so close to ours. It's not until I got to college that I met some of the most awesome people ever that happened to be American. I think when I moved here I got so turned off by people calling me names, making ignorant comments about my culture that I just said "well since black Americans don't like us Africans I'm going to stay away from them". For some people, it takes one bad experience for them to generalize things. Luckily for me once I got to college I realized that not all African Americans are going to call me names, they don't all think I had a pet giraffe lolol I started educating people. When someone makes an ignorant comment, I educate them. The same way that this guy made an ignorant to you, you educate him and let him know that THIS NYC lady is well traveled, cultured, and knowledgeable. I eat pizza on Monday and fufu on Tuesday!! Lol
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