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posts tagged "identity"

So I was watching an interview of Steve Stoute and was like ‘WOW this dude id brillaint’. ‘He is so smart’. So I went on and googled him to know more about him and then … UGH! yUCKKK!

Steve Stoute is one of the money men who engineered and is engineering the commodification of African American culture or how he would probably explain it, make black culture cross-over. Which is nonsensical since we know that sub-cultures DO NOT cross over (on their own), they get appropriated and exploited by the dominating culture which detains the power. 

This guy sold a cultural identity as an ACCESSORY - whose only value is linked to its  ’cool factor’ - to the world and by doing so, took it away from its originators to throw it like a simple rags at the feet of  Fortune 500 companies. He is the guy behind Jay-z and G-Unit deals with Reebok.

Also Steve Stoute, who is dark-skinned btw, is notoriously color-struck. He was for a long time one of the big names of an industry - the music industry - who unapologetically hates dark-skinned black women and has been erasing us from the media, EVEN WHEN IT PERTAINS TO ‘BLACK CULTURE’!!! He is also behind Carol’s Daughter’s move to publicly disown black women - a group of women who made that company - by launching a campaign with only racially-ambiguous and light-skinned women to represent the ‘diversity’ of their demographics and go after a ‘poly-ethnic' market. I know they are bitterly regretting it today, especially since Solange left! In Steve Stoute's perfect world, dark-skinned black women would not exist, I guess. 

Basically Steve Stoute is one of those people who think that racism can be ended by selling brownness and blackness to white people as disposable objects of consumption. Yeah racism can be ended by the capitalistic exploitation of minority groups’ identities. I am not even kidding; he had a show called the ‘Tanning of America’ (¬_¬)! This is not the first time I hear something like that. I remember watching Jay-z - you know, that dude who was selling Occupy Wall Street t-shirts to get his pocket fatter off a movement protesting against the excesses of capitalism (-_-” )- saying something similar on Oprah. And I am certain that Russell Simmons would agree with him.

What is interesting to note, is the fact that though the cultural exploitation and appropriation of African American culture ultimately benefit white-owned Fortune 500 companies, behind the scene, they are engineered by African American money men who get idolised for their ‘success’. I don’t want to have a simplistic and moralistic view of this because well, we all live in a world where ‘success’ is seen as something to aspire to and is tied to one’s position on the hierarchical capitalistic and exploitative machine. So I cannot blame people from an oppressed minority for trying to survive by embracing the values of the oppressive group. What I find interesting is the ease with which capitalism absorb EVERYTHING!! Even things that are in essence against it. Henceforth, if we need to sell ourselves to the money God, one of the many god of white supremacy, can we ever escape from it? I guess this is why all black movements of resistance around the world embraced Marxism early on. After the collapse and failure of the Soviet Union, is it reasonable to think that capitalism, with its phoenix-like abilities, can ever be defeated by all the brown people whose exploitation it feeds off, or our attempts to resist are doomed to be phagocyte by and destroy by it? 

cosmicyoruba:

lookingforthesteel:

eclecticspectrum:

bludclotartattack:

eclecticspectrum:

Shouts Outs to The Africans That Claims to Be Jamaicans aka “Kofi Kingston”

For me, this isn’t just comedy. You got faux revolutionaries (shout out to the ones on Tumblr) who think that being from the continent or 1st generation solves all identity issues around that particular kind of blackness. African cultureS are constantly disrespected by white people of course, and yes, other POC. I’ll bet my relaxer money that any 1st generation or recent immigrant kid here in the states has dealt with ignorance from their peers of all colors. Of course, the root of that issue is white hegemony but how often do elementary school students discuss how whiteness teaches them to loathe the POC cultures, in this case, African cultureS?

It’s not cool to be African. Sure there are people who are all about loving mother Africa, appropriating kente cloth and talking about Egypt, excuse me Kemet, as if that is the only place on the continent that produced greatness. (If I see another ankh I’m going to scream.) However, in the grand scheme of things, those people are few and ultimately, their behavior is highly problematic. That’s not to say that there are not people of the diaspora who manage to respect AfricanS and their respective cultureS but in my experience, those are far and few. I hope that others do not share my misfortune. 

AfricanS are the butt of jokes in popular American culture. (I almost said Western but let me stick to what I know.) Our accents are mocked and exaggerated. If another person clicks at me I might haul off and punch of them. People think of the poor starving African children to make themselves feel better about their “first world problems”. Never mind that there are hungry children in the so-called first world, and that many Africans have these “first world problems” as well.

In spite of these sentiments, I have never been one to hide my Ghanaian identitieS. As a child liked being able to pick up my cell phone and speak a different language with my family. It didn’t and still doesn’t bother me that My GaGa wears African prints whenever we she goes out. The woman is 2973469732 years old and I don’t think she’s ever put on a pair of pants. I had too much pride (with a smidge of arrogance) for me to feel bad just for being me.

As a Jamaican, I never experienced Africans playing Jamaican, only beef between us.

But real talk, being African only recently became cool here in the UK. Before that, naw, niggas was the butt of all jokes. Jamaicans were the top of the Black people pile for a long time out here.

Thanks for bringing in a UK perspective and being honest. People like to forget that AfricanS, Black AfricanS in particular are teased and disrespected constantly.  Being African is not the popular kind of black to be. Hell even the folks who are appropriative are laughed at. Not because folks recognize that their behavior is problematic but because Africans are always laughed at. 

No one wants their identity to be treated as a joke or a costume. So I don’t really get too upset with people who aren’t gushing with pride for their African culture. It’s not like it’s encouraged from mainstream society and in a way, it may not be encouraged at home. 

In my experience, parents want you to maintain the culture while simultaneously pushing assimilation. 

If any of my 1st generation folks have something to add please do. Especially if you’re outside of the United States. Discussions here are always US Centric and I’d love to here about other perspectives. 

The one on the UK is so true. When I was growing up, everyone wanted to identify as anything BUT African. And it was a lot cooler to be Jamaican or from the islands. Most people here idolized AA’s. So it’s still a major issues and it really only has been in the past couple of years that being Africa (or rather wearing wax prints etc) has become cool. Still, I don’t know how long that will last, given the way that taste is so easily coerced. And it’s not like people still don’t make “fresh of the boat” jokes, or ridicule African accents. So *le sigh

Adding to the UK perspective as well. I personally know a lot of Africans who (in the past) would lie about their nationalities because they didn’t want to be seen as African. Apparently this is all changing thanks to azonto and P-Square. But like lookingforthesteel suggests, you never really know.

(And how are they going to use an image of the badass circus performer who tamed a gotdamn hyena so that his daughter rides on it like a horse in a negative manner?)

(via thefemaletyrant)

~ Ignorance and rewriting history.

kneelingelephant:

I was watching a youtube video and one of the commenter pointed out: Who goes to Africa and names the most ancient human fossil which is of African origin, names this fossil “Lucy”.

And who goes deep into Africa and names the largest water fall “Victoria” as if the water fall has no history and rich culture associated to it? Only a racist privileged bigot who doesn’t even realize they’re racist. And that’s how people slowly distort history and rewrite facts. Imagine if one of the earliest if not the earliest human fossil had a clear sounding African name, how would that change how you view yourself? To know your genetic makeup is African and the very fist people to be humans, the very first people who made humans were African, imagine how that small fact would change the world outlook on Africa and Africans? But that opportunity is denied to many by small yet monumental changes such as naming an African fossil after a white English woman and calling it “Lucy”. This totally REWRITES everything.

Who does all of this??

Well the same person that name the land of our ancestors ‘AFRICA’ after an Italian historian called Leo Africanus.

Even ‘African’ as an identity is TOTALLY constructed by whiteness. It is a concept alien to our people prior colonisation. None of our reality has been untouched or untamed by whiteness! Even what we see as ‘ancestral traditions’. Nope! It still amazes me when I meet black people who do not understand that we can literally not escape whiteness even in the depths of our identity so let’s just face it and confront it head on.

I have moved past the stage where I would fantasize for a lost paradise because that is just a denial of my present as a child of colonialism, with a Christian name like my ancestors for about 5 generations who lives in an Euro-centric world, speaks and thinks in Euro-centric languages with Euro-centric ways. To yearn for the past is just a denial of my reality, it is rejection of who I am today, how my ancestors have fought for me, how I am still fighting for myself. I cant change what happen and we should not I think do that because those scars in the history of my people made me who I am today. I can at best be aware of myself and the dynamics at play that made and are making me who I am and understand how even with the little power I have I influence and shape the world and go from there. I cannot yearn for past traditions to make me who I am - because let be honest, many of these traditions were very oppressive too - and I wont let a destructive system further alienates me, so I must accept myself here right now and decide who I am, who I want to be, where I am going and how I would get there. This is resistance/resilience through acceptance. It is in the present that we create and prepare the future. I mean life is a perpetual present. So if I look back or away it is just for inspiration and examples but self-determination start with I, right, now, it is being free of dogmatic concepts either them being from our ancestors or oppressors. As long as I am alive, my cultures i.e. how I make sense of teh world and interact with it, will be alive.

Dahomey children 1967 by Irving Penn
I am not really sure what I should make of this, the fetishisation of brown bodies in western society (purposely left in the singular).
And I wonder isnt it the top of westernisation when us, black people and especially African people start circulating and collecting these pictures and are somehow fetshising ‘ourselves’, not  in the same way whiteness does blackness but with this sense of nostalgia for a past that never was, fantasies about what it could have been like if we would have remained untouched or untamed by whiteness,  or the pinnacle of our quest for identity: the yearning for a lost paradise far away in time and in space. 
I really dont know what to make of this series on Dahomey. Penn is one of my all time favorites but although his portfolio is very diverse for a fashion photographer, this series sticks out so much. What was he looking for?? And I also have all these questions about OUR motives as black people living in this era of globalisation where westernisation is accelerating. Why are we black WESTERNISED people so fascinated by pictures of INDIGENOUS black people?? Why?
Seriously, we complain about people like Eric Lafforgue who make a living out of exploiting pictures of indigenous people in Africa, put there name in big while not even acknowledging the objects of their photos as subjects with a fucking name! This is dehumanisation and we somehow support it because our blogs, our fantasies about Africa - and this also include born and raised Africans - are full of such pictures taken by white westerners in their voyeuristic safaris in the ‘wilderness’.
So where does the fascination comes from??
I can only speak for myself here but first of all I need to explain why these kinds of pictures taken by white people is exploitative, fetishising, dehumanising and harmful to indigenous people. I was asked this question and I am using this opportunity just to answer it. Pictures of white people that are taken and circulated in the mass media represent either celebrities, models or people selling or marketing something, or people with a story, a message or something that makes them special and stand out negatively or positively. NEVER EVER are white people photographed simply because they are white! They may be exotified but never fetishised for their whiteness! I am going to just give an example because it is very hard to explain it. I have lived in two of the most touristic places in the world and never have I ever seen a tourist - westerner or not - take pictures of a random person on the streets just because that person just happen to be a Londoner or a Parisianl. When tourists from around the world come here, they take pictures of places, objects, monuments, well everything that represent the ‘Other’, the exotic, this is at the heart of the tourist experience. White people / westerner don’t represent the ‘Other’! Whereas when tourists - westerners or not - visit the global South, their ‘Other’ are the ‘locals’, who are considered weird/exotic/different/strange little entities in themselves, not relatable human beings with as much depth and complexity. Racism was built on this principle. The problem with ‘otherisation’ is the fact that it is almost always the premise to dehumanization and commodification which inevitably lead to exploitation. Well we can see the damages today of the tourism industry on indigenous people around the world.
So I was wondering why do we, black people, fall for it too and I have to look back at my experience and realised that, though I understand the appeal for indigenous African cultures, I haven’t always felt this way. The more I got westernised - a process that accentuated with me moving here - the more I felt growing inside me this need for that lost paradise, that fantasied, utopian, idyllic Africa as a refuge and also as a reaction, as a defence mechanism to constantly be in full contact with the poison of whiteness. To be at the heart of whiteness exposes you in a very peculiar way to its threat. What is weird though, is the fact that in the west, I am ALWAYS defined by something ‘othering' such as black, African, PoC or whatever else. I am never just me like white people get to be! Yet I am trying to escape my ‘otherisation' by seeking refuge in 'othering' pictures of indigenous African black people. This for me, is the ultimate proof that first of all, escapism and denial of our reality as oppressed is not the solution and is highly damageable in the long run, which is why I do not believe in all that reclaiming blackness which is the essence of the 'otherisation' of people of African descent and is also based on all that 'Ancient' and 'Indegenous' Africa as an utopia; Secondly, westerners are still the ultimate definers of who we are; they re-wrote our history and remain to this day the ultimate providers of narratives and images about Africa!! And obviously those images and narratives are deeply anchored into white supremacy! This is also why I have been arguing against that fake ‘black unity’ crap which is actually western-centric to its core leads a lot of Africans - well I know since I was one of them - to fall for a western definition of themselves and not pursue their narratives or tell their stories with them at the center, from their point of view instead of getting trapped in false identities defined by the WESTERN WORLD, either by white or black westerners. 
So from our point of view as black people in the west, our native cultures of fantasies about indigenous cultures serve as refuges which is in stark contrast with the reality of indigenous pictures or everyday people back home. I have noticed that here black migrants take so much pride in their cultures yet back home, the sad truth is that most of us try to get rid of it as fast as possible in our quest for the western nec plus ultra. Those same indigenous peoples who are fiercely fighting for the survival of the culture, for the integrity of their identity are oppressed, humiliated, ostracised and rejected by those of us who have chosen westernisation and completely embrace the fallacious idea of progress through western means. I personally remember how Pygmees and Wodaabe for instance were despised, looked down upon, mocked and ridiculed. Yet their pictures are everywhere on Tumblr.
I find this quite pathetic and hypocritical from us westernised Africans. It is tragic to come all the way here to realise that we would never fully integrate something in which we are the perpetual other and that we have internalised our oppression so much that our behaviours and thoughts mirror those of our oppressors. 
So in this part of the world, we are seeking refuge in fantasies about indigenous people while back home indigenous people’s main threat is us.

Dahomey children 1967 by Irving Penn

I am not really sure what I should make of this, the fetishisation of brown bodies in western society (purposely left in the singular).

And I wonder isnt it the top of westernisation when us, black people and especially African people start circulating and collecting these pictures and are somehow fetshising ‘ourselves’, not  in the same way whiteness does blackness but with this sense of nostalgia for a past that never was, fantasies about what it could have been like if we would have remained untouched or untamed by whiteness,  or the pinnacle of our quest for identity: the yearning for a lost paradise far away in time and in space. 

I really dont know what to make of this series on Dahomey. Penn is one of my all time favorites but although his portfolio is very diverse for a fashion photographer, this series sticks out so much. What was he looking for?? And I also have all these questions about OUR motives as black people living in this era of globalisation where westernisation is accelerating. Why are we black WESTERNISED people so fascinated by pictures of INDIGENOUS black people?? Why?

Seriously, we complain about people like Eric Lafforgue who make a living out of exploiting pictures of indigenous people in Africa, put there name in big while not even acknowledging the objects of their photos as subjects with a fucking name! This is dehumanisation and we somehow support it because our blogs, our fantasies about Africa - and this also include born and raised Africans - are full of such pictures taken by white westerners in their voyeuristic safaris in the ‘wilderness’.

So where does the fascination comes from??

I can only speak for myself here but first of all I need to explain why these kinds of pictures taken by white people is exploitative, fetishising, dehumanising and harmful to indigenous people. I was asked this question and I am using this opportunity just to answer it. Pictures of white people that are taken and circulated in the mass media represent either celebrities, models or people selling or marketing something, or people with a story, a message or something that makes them special and stand out negatively or positively. NEVER EVER are white people photographed simply because they are white! They may be exotified but never fetishised for their whiteness! I am going to just give an example because it is very hard to explain it. I have lived in two of the most touristic places in the world and never have I ever seen a tourist - westerner or not - take pictures of a random person on the streets just because that person just happen to be a Londoner or a Parisianl. When tourists from around the world come here, they take pictures of places, objects, monuments, well everything that represent the ‘Other’, the exotic, this is at the heart of the tourist experience. White people / westerner don’t represent the ‘Other’! Whereas when tourists - westerners or not - visit the global South, their ‘Other’ are the ‘locals’, who are considered weird/exotic/different/strange little entities in themselves, not relatable human beings with as much depth and complexity. Racism was built on this principle. The problem with ‘otherisation’ is the fact that it is almost always the premise to dehumanization and commodification which inevitably lead to exploitation. Well we can see the damages today of the tourism industry on indigenous people around the world.

So I was wondering why do we, black people, fall for it too and I have to look back at my experience and realised that, though I understand the appeal for indigenous African cultures, I haven’t always felt this way. The more I got westernised - a process that accentuated with me moving here - the more I felt growing inside me this need for that lost paradise, that fantasied, utopian, idyllic Africa as a refuge and also as a reaction, as a defence mechanism to constantly be in full contact with the poison of whiteness. To be at the heart of whiteness exposes you in a very peculiar way to its threat. What is weird though, is the fact that in the west, I am ALWAYS defined by something ‘othering' such as black, African, PoC or whatever else. I am never just me like white people get to be! Yet I am trying to escape my ‘otherisation' by seeking refuge in 'othering' pictures of indigenous African black people. This for me, is the ultimate proof that first of all, escapism and denial of our reality as oppressed is not the solution and is highly damageable in the long run, which is why I do not believe in all that reclaiming blackness which is the essence of the 'otherisation' of people of African descent and is also based on all that 'Ancient' and 'Indegenous' Africa as an utopia; Secondly, westerners are still the ultimate definers of who we are; they re-wrote our history and remain to this day the ultimate providers of narratives and images about Africa!! And obviously those images and narratives are deeply anchored into white supremacy! This is also why I have been arguing against that fake ‘black unity’ crap which is actually western-centric to its core leads a lot of Africans - well I know since I was one of them - to fall for a western definition of themselves and not pursue their narratives or tell their stories with them at the center, from their point of view instead of getting trapped in false identities defined by the WESTERN WORLD, either by white or black westerners. 

So from our point of view as black people in the west, our native cultures of fantasies about indigenous cultures serve as refuges which is in stark contrast with the reality of indigenous pictures or everyday people back home. I have noticed that here black migrants take so much pride in their cultures yet back home, the sad truth is that most of us try to get rid of it as fast as possible in our quest for the western nec plus ultra. Those same indigenous peoples who are fiercely fighting for the survival of the culture, for the integrity of their identity are oppressed, humiliated, ostracised and rejected by those of us who have chosen westernisation and completely embrace the fallacious idea of progress through western means. I personally remember how Pygmees and Wodaabe for instance were despised, looked down upon, mocked and ridiculed. Yet their pictures are everywhere on Tumblr.

I find this quite pathetic and hypocritical from us westernised Africans. It is tragic to come all the way here to realise that we would never fully integrate something in which we are the perpetual other and that we have internalised our oppression so much that our behaviours and thoughts mirror those of our oppressors. 

So in this part of the world, we are seeking refuge in fantasies about indigenous people while back home indigenous people’s main threat is us.

(via africanstories)

Introduction

dqueerafricans:

Queer identifying women and trans women from the African Diaspora negotiate a complicated range of identities. Often negotiating themselves both as women, queer, POC and immigrants their experience is the epitome of intersectionality.

Already part of a marginal community, as immigrants or the children of immigrants, we as individuals most negotiate an even more marginalized identity.

Too often, African queers find themselves placing their identity as African separate from their identities as queer. This community seeks to reconcile this challenge by celebrating and connecting proud queer Africans who now reside outside of the continent.

This group will seek to facilitate the meeting of Queer Africans, and the discussions that will ensue both offline and online

While we many have many differences, our identities as female identified Queer Africans in the Diaspora allows for a unique experience that both shapes and connects us in a way that blurs the lines that separate us.

Both @lesiliva (http://lesiliva.tumblr.com/)  and @ blacqueerwomyn(http://blacqueerwomyn.tumblr.com/)  are Queer women from Africa whom while going through the initial process of coming out found that they lacked a community of individuals that could specifically understand the  range of challenges they were facing based on the various identities they needed to negotiate.

This tumblr is meant to be a reflection of what the community needs. A resource, a sanctuary, a reminder of home, a place of friendship and whatever DQ-Africans need.

*note- We have chosen to focus on issues that surround Queer women, because both of us have intimate and direct knowledge of the issues that queer women face.

(via thefemaletyrant)

apif:

African Prints in Interior Design. Which item do u want in your apartment?
Check-out the designs here!

'African prints'?? Anyway, I personally find this chair fucking disgusting and disgraceful.
This print is copied from a Malian fabric called Bògòlanfini or ‘mud cloth’. It has a cultural significance of importance in traditional Malian culture and identity.

'In traditional Malian culture, bògòlanfini is worn by hunters, serving as camouflage, as ritual protection and as a badge of status. Women are wrapped in bògòlanfini after their initiation into adulthood (which includes genital cutting) and immediately after childbirth, as the cloth is believed to have the power to absorb the dangerous forces released under such circumstances.
Bògòlanfini patterns are rich in cultural significance, referring to historical events (such as a famous battle between a Malian warrior and the French), crocodiles (significant in Bambara mythology) or other objects, mythological concepts or proverbs.Since about 1980, Bògòlanfini has become a symbol of Malian cultural identity and is being promoted as such by the Malian government.’ [x]

Bògòlanfini from Mali, Kente cloth from Ghana and Ankara from all over west Africa are symbols of the cultural appropriation and destruction of African cultureS. They have sadly become incredibly popular as the ‘you want a little peice of AAAFFFRRIIKKUUUH’ get go. From shoes, to curtains, to furniture,  Bògòlanfini has been bastardized to death and the people who created it, who gave it its meaning have received absolutely NO recognition whatsoever.
One of the saddest thing about this is the fact that a white American male , built ALL his fucking career by ripping off this fabric.

Yep, Keith Haring, held as art hero by some, praised for his ‘vision, creative spirit, talent, innovation’. Child, let me laugh! I wish I could laugh though but this thing is beyond fucking depressing and unfair! And you better be sure that you will find thousands upon thousands of people who know about THIS SINGLE WHITE AMERICAN MAN’S work and life than one person able to put Mali on a map. His pieces are worth MILLIONS and he gets all the fucking awards while the originators of the culture, not only stay in oblivion, but also forced to take part in the bastardisation of their culture by selling cheap copies to tourists in order NOT TO FUCKING DIE, and on top of that made to feel ashamed of their cultural identity and see it as inferior!!!

From Ciaafrique: 

Living in Mali I never paid much attention to the mud cloth Because for me  there was nothing nice about it. All I cared about was western clothes. My mind changed quite a bit since I started this blog because now I know that its because of the way we thought that we are still behind in fashion . I am ashamed to say that it took a western designer to use my own cloth for me to appreciate how beautiful it is.The mud cloth is a fabric that is part of my culture, and its not made in the west like Ankara(wax) is . Here is a collage from some of our fav celebs and runway models rocking the trend.

I think it is unfortunate that most discussions about cultural appropriation fail to place it in the context and process of alienation.
In order to be easily exploitable, malleable and controllable we must internalize our own inferiority and racism. And this results in us being ashamed of ourselves and rejecting who we are, i.e. our culture, identity and essence. Colons knew this which is why the understood the power of institutions such as the church and western education to break the spirit of the colonised. And once this is done, colons can totally exploit our culture for their sole consumption, taking what is sacred from us and making it meaningless, cheap and devoid of any value. Basically, they take away from us the ability to give value to anything even to ourselves. 
I can somehow compare this to how as black women we are socialised to internalise that we are ugly, repulsive, worthless, our feminity is constantly under attack, all of this to make us more vulnerable to the hypersexualisation, fetishisation and sexual exploitation we have been particularly victims of throughout history and we still are to this day within white supremacy.
The ultimate aim of alienation is to make of us, our bodies and our identities, disposable objects of consumption for our oppressors. This is what cultural appropriation plays into and achieves. 

apif:

African Prints in Interior Design. Which item do u want in your apartment?

Check-out the designs here!

'African prints'?? Anyway, I personally find this chair fucking disgusting and disgraceful.

This print is copied from a Malian fabric called Bògòlanfini or ‘mud cloth’. It has a cultural significance of importance in traditional Malian culture and identity.

'In traditional Malian culture, bògòlanfini is worn by hunters, serving as camouflage, as ritual protection and as a badge of status. Women are wrapped in bògòlanfini after their initiation into adulthood (which includes genital cutting) and immediately after childbirth, as the cloth is believed to have the power to absorb the dangerous forces released under such circumstances.

Bògòlanfini patterns are rich in cultural significance, referring to historical events (such as a famous battle between a Malian warrior and the French), crocodiles (significant in Bambara mythology) or other objects, mythological concepts or proverbs.Since about 1980, Bògòlanfini has become a symbol of Malian cultural identity and is being promoted as such by the Malian government.’ [x]

Bògòlanfini from Mali, Kente cloth from Ghana and Ankara from all over west Africa are symbols of the cultural appropriation and destruction of African cultureS. They have sadly become incredibly popular as the ‘you want a little peice of AAAFFFRRIIKKUUUH’ get go. From shoes, to curtains, to furniture,  Bògòlanfini has been bastardized to death and the people who created it, who gave it its meaning have received absolutely NO recognition whatsoever.

One of the saddest thing about this is the fact that a white American male , built ALL his fucking career by ripping off this fabric.

http://25.media.tumblr.com/tumblr_m66jhrwftt1rz1s87o1_400.jpg

Yep, Keith Haring, held as art hero by some, praised for his ‘vision, creative spirit, talent, innovation’. Child, let me laugh! I wish I could laugh though but this thing is beyond fucking depressing and unfair! And you better be sure that you will find thousands upon thousands of people who know about THIS SINGLE WHITE AMERICAN MAN’S work and life than one person able to put Mali on a map. His pieces are worth MILLIONS and he gets all the fucking awards while the originators of the culture, not only stay in oblivion, but also forced to take part in the bastardisation of their culture by selling cheap copies to tourists in order NOT TO FUCKING DIE, and on top of that made to feel ashamed of their cultural identity and see it as inferior!!!


From Ciaafrique

Living in Mali I never paid much attention to the mud cloth Because for me  there was nothing nice about it. All I cared about was western clothes. My mind changed quite a bit since I started this blog because now I know that its because of the way we thought that we are still behind in fashion . I am ashamed to say that it took a western designer to use my own cloth for me to appreciate how beautiful it is.The mud cloth is a fabric that is part of my culture, and its not made in the west like Ankara(wax) is . Here is a collage from some of our fav celebs and runway models rocking the trend.

I think it is unfortunate that most discussions about cultural appropriation fail to place it in the context and process of alienation.

In order to be easily exploitable, malleable and controllable we must internalize our own inferiority and racism. And this results in us being ashamed of ourselves and rejecting who we are, i.e. our culture, identity and essence. Colons knew this which is why the understood the power of institutions such as the church and western education to break the spirit of the colonised. And once this is done, colons can totally exploit our culture for their sole consumption, taking what is sacred from us and making it meaningless, cheap and devoid of any value. Basically, they take away from us the ability to give value to anything even to ourselves. 

I can somehow compare this to how as black women we are socialised to internalise that we are ugly, repulsive, worthless, our feminity is constantly under attack, all of this to make us more vulnerable to the hypersexualisation, fetishisation and sexual exploitation we have been particularly victims of throughout history and we still are to this day within white supremacy.

The ultimate aim of alienation is to make of us, our bodies and our identities, disposable objects of consumption for our oppressors. This is what cultural appropriation plays into and achieves. 

(via ausetkmt)

i agree we need new concepts/systems of uplifting the black self for the sake of the black self, not as a direct response to negate the superiority of whiteness/reverse the psychological damage done by slavery, institutionalized racism, n white supremacy. but u often attack these outmoded concepts angrily, as opposed to critiquing them constructively/offering suggestions as to what new psychological concepts of self definition would be more effective, which i find problematic, even if i feel u

@adebisistate-of-mind

You are right.

The thing is that most do not understand that our different settings do shape MOST of our relationship with white supremacy. While I can understand that most black people living within majoritarly white societies have a reformist and integrationist appraoch, for a non-westerners like myslef it doesn’t make sense AT ALL.

I will NEVER understand what it feels like to grow up and develop in a white society because I didn’t have to go through that. That reactionary approach DOES make sense in a western setting and is beneficial on some aspects, when trying to make it in a white society. So reappropriating blackness may be beneficial for AA or other black westerners in Europe.This not the path I choose to take personally but still, I RESPECT IT!

My main issue however is the fact that the re-appropriation of blackness is made mostly at the expense of the diversity of African cultureS and peopleS’ historieS and identitieS. From the cultural appropriation to Kemet or all the ‘Kings and queens’ garbabe. This is extremely hurtful and harmful to me!! This DOES hurt me and most of my attempts to voice it calming on this site which is mostly American centric as a whole, not only in black circles, were firstly taken with ridicule then I WAS ATTACKED IN THE INTEGRITY OF MY IDENTITY AND ACCUSED OF ‘ANTI-BLACKNESS’ by buffoons unable to conceive Africa as nothing but a monolith.

Like I said earlier, being a westerner and an American confer you power hence oppressive potential over people like me and I have distanced myself from people who have shown NO FUCKING RESPECT for me, my identity and my culture! Consequently, I do not feel obliged to “critiquing them constructively/offering suggestions”. In other words, I do not owe niceness to people actively oppressing and deriding me.

We were KINGS and QUEENS before the white man came.

Says the ultimate Negro, once again proving that he is TOTALLY unable of conceiving and detaching himself from the white man he claims to hate so much. 

One can NOT build an empire in a cell.

There is no liberation possible through codes and concepts exclusively built for oppression. I hope many of you will one day understand this!

And that ‘king and queen’ garbage is seriously getting on my nerves as an African! The annihilation and romantisation of our deep and complex histories solely to feed falsely liberating fantasies to get back at whiteness is extremely harmful and disgusting! 

We were NOT ALL KINGS or QUEENS and we never needed to be. UGH, this site!

how broken we are

vagabondaesthetics:

Sometimes I just feel like the Negro would die without white people. We can’t look at ourselves without thinking of white people be it positive, negative, love, hate, compare, or contrast.

The reason being that the Negro is NOT a person but the product pf whiteness. The negro only exists and was created in white consciousness as the ultimate non-white, the non-human.

All the characteristics that constitutes the essence of the negro, who he is and what he stands for are DIRECTLY created by whiteness. For instance, while something as superfical as phenotype constitutes the essence of blackness, whiteness can escape such reductive and primitive definition. For instance being/looking ‘white’ doesn’t make one ultimately white but being/looking ‘black’ does. Because whiteness is complexity, depth, hence humanity while blackness is in essence caricaturization, stereotypes, dependent on what it is opposed to i.e. whiteness, with notions so reductive and small that in my opinion, they could NEVER capture all the complexity of human nature. Well, this is my opinion and I know that most disagree with me on this point!

 A person exists in themselves, the Negro can only exist within whiteness as the ultimate negation, opposite, other against which whiteness affirm its humanity and superiority. 

I would leave it to those who still think that re-appropriating blackness can ever truly be liberating because they have motives that I may not undestand but I respect!

Anyway, Malik, your intellectual sophistication is dazzling and way too above most of Tumblr crowd, please down try and downgrade your thought process for them. Keep thinking and providing me with food for thoughts (^_^)!

Mugabe and the ‘white African’

sensationnalisme:

cosmicyoruba:

sensationnalisme:

Not only is the title problematic but it is absolutely ridiculous and so easy to critic because it’s full of shit and has an agenda. 

I’m usually supportive of struggling and mistreated people and I don’t deny the story or the white farmer’s rights but this documentary is just a lame attempt to prove that white people do suffer too. I won’t even touch on the subject of the native Zimbabweans “black Africans” and how they are represented in this garbage: helpless and counting on the poor yet still brave white savior. I don’t even know why I watch it when it’s clearly not directed at me.

Lmfao the white people on here, cry me a river. 

Read: Whitewashing Zimbabwe’s history

The film Mugabe and the White African puts a heroic gloss on the colonial attitudes that endure in independent Zimbabwe

Read this if you want to laugh.

#no such thing as a white african

Do you know the most stupid thing I came across while on my Tumblr break? Some “white African” wrote a post on WHITE AFROFUTURISM…as in he was trying to argue that there should be a future for white people in Africa. The fool who wrote that piece was all “imagine a white president of an African country”, “white minorities getting equal representation in the media”. I never wanted to slap someone so bad (but my hand is too soft so I’d use something like a laptop to slap the person).

Shit, imagine Africans been sidelined on our own ancestral land. Mschw, I’ll never stop pointing out the hypocrisy of the majority of these “white Africans” who want to act like they are oppressed. Cry me a fucking ocean.

WHITE AFROFUTURISM, the hell? lmao, their sense of superiority is extremely strong, I’ve ran across a few of them from South-ern African countries and their reputation is not bad for a reason, they really think that this part of Africa BELONGS to them and that they will reclaim it one day. Hell, this year, someone said Rhodesia in front of me, I was shocked.

The bolded, to be honest with you, knowing Africans and the way they welcome every invaders with open arms and big smiles, I can see it, many African countries have white in the governments (mostly as spokespersons) and I’m not even talking about the rainbow nation South Africa.

We’re the only ones who think it’s over, they really believe that they will re-take it over. You have to watch it, just disgusting and annoying, instead of feeling bad, I was angered at the portrayal. I feel for the farmer because his suffering was real but this is clearly the work of propaganda. They absolutely love this documentary, I’m yet to see a native Zimbabwean endorsing it.

My sister lives in South Africa and from what she told me, the worst thing there is NOT the violence from poor people in townships like western media try to make us believe but THE VILE, DISGUSTING, ENTITLED AND UNASHAMED racism of white South Africans. Way too many of them are still in position of power and making it infernal for black people. Yet they feel oppressed because it is not like in the ‘Good old days of Apartheid' anymore.

UGH and the fucking worst in all of that, is that many of them still believe that SA belongs to THEM, that ‘there was no one living there when their ancestors got there’, that without them ‘South Africa would be a shit hole like the rest of Africa’. I have heard many white South Africans my age, say these things! They feel attacked, threatened and oppressed by policies trying to eliminate their white privilege. They find it unacceptable and unfair.

What is absolutely hilarious though, is that many of them who have double nationalities or the ability to leave due to their white ancestry, left for the west, thinking they would be missed. Results: SA’s economy is thriving and now that the west in economically crumbling and has to ask for change from us darkies they used to oppress, from emerging powers such as China, Brasil and India, many of those white SA who left thinking the country would collapse without them are now returning home. Bwahahahahahhahahaha

I don’t believe in such a thing as ‘White African’ because all the misery happening in Africa is the direct results of the rape and exploitation of our contienent by whiteness!! ‘White Africans’ were and still are the first beneficiaries of this. This is why I never had that much sympathy for white farmers. Sure Mugabe did destroy a substantial part of its economy in the way he handled that situation, but the reality is that white farmers are nothing but the faces of white supremacy, the faces of the exploitation and destruction of Africa profiting to whiteness, the faces of white entitlement and injustice. THEY HAVE NO FUCKING LEGITIMACY ON OUR LAND WHATSOEVER other than the one conferred by white supremacy! On top of that most of them, are just as racist as Klansmen and still view us as animals!

They can claim their nationality, but I just can’t seat and listen to white people claiming any type or form of Africaneity!! Unconceivable and unacceptable!

NB:I know that many non-Africans on this site dont know this but when we say ‘white Africans’, we are ONLY talking about people of European descent living in Africa. Some North Africans may ‘look white’ but they are NOT! Most of them are 100% indigenous to the continent of Africa, hence Africans. The phenotypical  differences simply result from the differences in climate and the environment that varies widely on the continent. I am saying this because westerners never cease to amaze me with their ignorance and entitlement. They are ignorant of so much - western privilege, yet feel entitled to an opinion on issues above their understanding. I will never forget that white imbecile lecturing me on how racist and uncompassionate I was towards my ‘white Africans’ counterparts such as Zinedine Zidane simply because he has blue eyes. “He didn’t choose to be white.” I think a part of me  died that day!

(via sensationnalisme-deactivated201)

To understand what has happened in Tumblr black social justice sphere, it is imperative that you understand the notion of Identity politics and its implications. I think I posted a definition of it, weeks ago.

This is very very important in order to make sense of how all the intra-group tensions and the erection of a self-proclaimed elite on this website, distribuing good and bad points and attacking whomever they deem ‘anti-black’ has happen. Here is an excerpt: 

From these understandings of subjectivity, it is easy to see how critics of identity politics, and even some cautious supporters, have feared that it is prone to essentialism. This expression is another philosophical term of abuse, intended to capture a multitude of sins. In its original contexts in metaphysics, the term implies the belief that an object has a certain quality by virtue of which it is what it is; for Locke, famously, the essence of a triangle is that it is a three-sided shape. In the contemporary humanities the term is used more loosely to imply, most commonly, an illegitimate generalization about identity (Heyes 2000).
In the case of identity politics, two claims stand out as plausibly “essentialist:” the first is the understanding of the subject that characterizes a single axis of identity as discrete and taking priority in representing the self—as if being Asian-American, for example, were entirely separable from being a woman. To the extent that identity politics urges mobilization around a single axis, it will put pressure on participants to identify that axis as their defining feature, when in fact they may well understand themselves as integrated selves who cannot be represented so selectively or even reductively (Spelman 1988). The second form of essentialism is closely related to the first: generalizations made about particular social groups in the context of identity politics may come to have a disciplinary function within the group, not just describing but also dictating the self-understanding that its members should have. Thus, the supposedly liberatory new identity may inhibit autonomy, as Anthony Appiah puts it, replacing “one kind of tyranny with another” (Appiah in Gutmann ed. 1994, 163). Just as dominant groups in the culture at large insist that the marginalized integrate by assimilating to dominant norms, so within some practices of identity politics dominant sub-groups may, in theory and practice, impose their vision of the group’s identity onto all its members. For example, in his films Black Is, Black Ain’t and Tongues Untied Marlon Riggs eloquently portrays the exclusion of Black women and gay Black men from heterosexist and masculinist understandings of African-American identity politics.”

Thus, the supposedly liberatory new identity may inhibit autonomy, as Anthony Appiah puts it, replacing “one kind of tyranny with another” (Appiah in Gutmann ed. 1994, 163). Just as dominant groups in the culture at large insist that the marginalized integrate by assimilating to dominant norms, so within some practices of identity politics dominant sub-groups may, in theory and practice, impose their vision of the group’s identity onto all its members.

This part here ^ is extremely important and highlights how people who pretend to stand against abuse and against oppression, start to develop oppressive traits and actively take part in abusing members of the group they claim to stand for.

Dominant sub-groups imposing their vision of identity onto all its members.

TRAGIC!

I am here for self-growth, not for some e-thug on the internet telling me who I am and who I am supposed to be.

What you have to understand though if you read the rest of the article is the fact that this kind of behaviour totally makes sense to them because they see it as necessary and indispensable for the common good, i.e it is just getting rid of bad apples. So there is no point in trying to argue with them rationally, because bullying and silencing others make sense to them.

After all, as Deleuze said, “Reason is always a region cut out of the irrational-not sheltered from the irrational at all, but a region traversed by the irrational and defined only by a certain type of relation between irrational factors.  […] It’s like theology: everything about it is rational if you accept sin, immaculate conception" So yeah, reason is a creation of the human mind created on irrational factors, so for outsiders of that groupthink or hivemind, that kind of shit may not make sense to them but it perfectly does.

Also when people reject the dominant culture, they desperately need something to replace it. Freedom can be scary for most. Which is how we end up whit semi-god like figures who can do whatever they want and be backed and validated by many into it.

Obviously to reach that point, critical thinking should have been thrown out of the window a long time ago. 

I do not blame him for being annoyed. But this is a situation that calls for understanding. Being connected to Africa means listening to the people. The name he carries did what it was intended to do - link him to the continent and in this case Nigerians. That means dealing with everything that comes with having that name - the good, the bad, and even the ugly.

Welcome to being a part of an African identity, where it isn’t always daisies and buttercups.

eclecticspectrum (via spawnofhumanbeings)

This This!!

With his name, he is now forever linked to the African continent and precisely to the Yorubas, isn’t that what his parent wanted?? But when people he is now linked to, raise their voices he gets offended, why??

It took me a very very long time to understand this but in US-centric blackness talks about ‘return to the motherland’, the motherland is conceptualised as a place that hasn’t changed at all since the beginning of the Atlantic slave trade. That place is desert, there is no one there, only pieces of Ankara and Kente cloth lying on the ground, with some cowries here and there, some Masai necklaces, tribal names, maybe some Ancient Egyptians or Kemetians or whatever running errands (obviously they are all black!!) with some Nubians from wayyyyyyy wayyyyyyyyyyyy back, like millennia ago (Not the current Nubians whose struggles, western blacks do not give a fuck about, they made it quite clear) and yep obviously pyramids and Pharaohs everywhere. This is Africa to them, I am not even joking! Their idea of Africa is just as poor and dehumanising as white people’s in true western fashion. 

We, Africans are non-entities. we do not exist as the people who carry and produce the culture - they claim to love so much, we do not exist as peopleS with historieS far richer and complex than the mental masturbations of kemet, we do not exist as peopleS with identitieS and struggleS worth knowing! We just DO NOT EXIST!! 

THEY DO NOT ACKNOWLEDGE OUR HUMAN COMPLEXITY!! JUST LIKE WHITENESS!! This is why I was quick to desolidarise and distance myself from US-centric blackness when I understood this. When they look at me, my apparent blackness is a mirror to them, so they only see me as a black person LIKE THEM!! So I am expected to behave and understand the world LIKE THEM, because, they do conceive themselves as the default blacks!! So I am just this blank canvas projecting back THEIR BLACKNESS. If I do not align, BOOM, I am the anti-black traitor seeking the destruction of African Americans! Me, a Bamileke woman, the history of my people, the genocide of my people, the dictatorship I was born under, me, the African girl, the non-westerner terrified of living a life of misery and destitution that very few of them could ever picture, I DO NOT FUCKING EXIST!!!

This is why they are so fucking shocked and outraged when we raised our voices, BECAUSE WE DO NOT EXIST outside of the cognitive dissonance where they are all stuck in. We are non-entities and the return to the motherland is just like a walk to the park to collect all those ‘African’ artefacts lying there.

Do you think that this man who carries a distorted Yoruba name could EVER consider us his equals despite all his talk about ‘blackness’, the ‘motherland’ blablah blahhhh?? Do you think he can ever sympathise with those his parents’ choices hurt and even try to approach things from their perspectives???

NEVVVVVEEEEERRRRRR

They were all so fucking quick to dismiss our complaints LIKE THEY ALWAYS DO and make it about their pain, their history, the civil right movements LIKE THEY ALWAYS DO!! Seriously who give a fuck about the pain, the history, the opinions of people who do not exist?? Who?

We are not expected to talk back, we are just supposed to sit there, look down and thank them for treating us like garbage because this is blackness, this is unity!! And I use to think they were my people SMH

To Baratunde Thurston

queerhairyvag:

howtobeblack:

I respond to Naija Annoyance over my annoyance about Nigerians and my name

Saw this on the Internet. You should click through for the entire thing. My response is below.

eclecticspectrum:

If you can’t understand why Nigerians feel overprotective of a name like Baratunde then…oh boy.

I am so tired of the people saying “I just want to connect to Africa” and not realize that by doing so they will ruffle feathers.

No one is required to feel flattered by your desires.

DAMN IT…

For the record, I don’t expect dances or flattery, nor did a ever say that’s what I deserved. The full explanation of my name is outlined in my book, and based on your post, it seems like you actually read the chapter. If not, I urge you to. If you have, I would ask that you read it again. Regardless, I made several large points

1. I did not name myself. I was given this name. I have worn it and love it, but it was not MY decision. 

2. When I was a young child, around 12 years old, I met a Nigerian man who went off on me about my name. He was the father of a friend of mine named Babatunde. He went into a tirade about how black Americans aren’t real Africans, never would be, and were lost etc etc. It’s crazy for a grown-ass man to go off on a little boy bashing African-Americans, and it’s an unforgettable experience for me.

3. SInce that time, and especially online, I regularly meet Nigerians who hear my name and initiate a milder form of the same lecture. I may be the first “Baratunde” they’ve met, but they are the umpteenth Nigerian I’ve met and it gets a bit exhausting, predictable, and a bit comical at the same time. 

4. You emphasized: No one is required to feel flattered by your desires

This is the part of your note I have the most issues with because that is not my expectation, and my name is not a function of “my desires.”

I don’t expect love or praise or hugs. I never asked for nor implied that. But, neither do I expect vitriolic rage, condescending lectures and disownership over a decision that wasn’t even mine to begin with. As for “desires,” you seem guilty of the same dismissive attitude you accuse me of when you wrote ”if you can’t understand why Nigerians feel overprotective of a name like Baratunde…oh boy”

By couching my not-quite-Nigerian name as simply “desires” you completely ignore the context of that desire among my parents and a generation of black Americans. They weren’t simply cultural misappropriators fiending for an African name at any cost for no good reason. It wasn’t discretionary like a “desire” for designer jeans. If you can’t understand how black American people, stripped of their history and miseducated to the point of self-hatred, would opt for a name closer to that of their ancestors, EVEN IF MISTAKEN, then… oh boy.

Here’s a proposal.

Let’s both put down the self-righteousness and the idea that our annoyance is unique and privileged and above criticism or varied interpretation. Let’s not put words into each other’s mouths, especially when those words are spelled out in detail in a book chapter. (sorry, that’s a swipe, but that’s part of my annoyance in this case). 

Let’s instead focus on the reasons behind the expectations and the protectiveness and the “desires.” I’m not going to change my name. It’s a part of me now. However, I really would love to know, since you put it out there, your thoughts on why “Nigerians feel overprotective of a name like Babatunde.” You never actually explained.

You and eclecticspectrum make really valid points. I don’t know who you are Baratunde nor have I read your book (I don’t live in the US) but personally, it’s not fair you received such negative backlash by a grown man when you were younger. 

You didn’t name yourself; your family just wanted to have a genuine connection to Africa by giving you a Naija name (that’s been edited a little) but they unfortunately didn’t realize that editing an original Naija name is see as really rude by a lot of people. Im not sure if they spoke about this with Naija people before giving you the name because now you’re unfortunately burdened with the hostility you receive :/ (or maybe they did but Naija people have differing opinions on editing names)

The thing is, Black Americans get defensive about their history and culture when met with hostility by non-US Blacks.  In the exact same way, non-US Blacks also get defensive about their histories and cultures when they feel their cultureS are turned into a sort of gimmick. Unfortunately due to America’s past, there’s no way for AfricanS to express their dislike of their cultures being misappropriated without being called arrogant (due to Black Americans history of not knowing their original cultural identitieS)

But I will say a lot of Black Americans & Europeans aren’t aware of the concept of Western Privilege, which automatically puts POCs and white westerners’ voices over those of POCs coming from the South. I’ve lived in the West half of my life so I have it too and must be careful how I put things across because I might unintentionally be stifling the voices of fellow Naija people back home. 

Lack of awareness of Western Privilege coupled with America’s sense of not really knowing about other countries/People, makes discussions of Blackness really America-focused. This is where a lot of Southern POCs clash with Western POCs (it’s not just black people that face this, a lot of AsiaN people from the West and South clash this way too: Because Western Privilege is something Western POCs don’t acknowledge as they think being a POC mean they can never be oppressive towards non-wesern POCs. they unintentionally suppress these POCs voices).

As a Nigerian living in the West, I don’t mind the name change but I know a lot of Naija people (especially from back home) will feel confused about why Babatunde needed to be changed innto Baratunde in the first place. It feels disrespectful. Like the original name isin’t enough for Westerners.

That’s nothing to do with you, that’s something your parents should have forseen. That’s your name and no one can take that from you. I actually like the name but Im just here to post why it can be seen as extremly disrespectful to Nigerians who have lived in Nigeria for a long time. it isin’t to challene you, it’s more a question of… “why the change?”

 AfricanS historically and currently have enough aggro with white people changing AfricaN cultures to suit their western ethnocentric standards-  we don’t need western POCs doing it too. A lot of AfricanS also struggle with feeling inferior due to colonialism, so a lot decide not to give their childrenn AfricaN names because they feel they’ll fare better in soceity. I guess, knowing that black people are editing their names is like a slap in the face. hence where part of the hostility you recieve comes from.

The other part is that of our voices not being heard when it comes to ther own past history of struggles and Black Identity. This isin’t just a tumblr thing but it hapens in real life; whenever there’s a talk of Black Identity, some African Americans always seem to dismiss these importat conversations by reminding people of their own struggles (slavery, loss of identity), as if that’s something that can be easily forgotten. As if Black Identity and Black struggles are only important when it concerns America. Completely erasing the real history of Black Europeans who also have slaves as ancestors. This history that they too have to deal with. Dismissing the histories of AfricannS who grow up feeling inferior to both white people and western POCs.

I know it’s not easy to learn about these stuff in America due to it’s sketchy education system but it’s no reason to not want to engage if there is a chance to. They never seem to want to learn about Black people’s identities from other places, it’s almost like it’s a threat to their own concept of blackness.

So black AfricanS stay silent because they know how the game of Western Privilege works. That’s where half this hostility comes from. We are always told to know about Black American’s history (by Black Americans) but when it comes to the reverse, we’re supposed to feel greatful when black americans want to connect, without wanting to learn about these places.

. and if we try to tell them why it’s important that anyone have to learn about the various AfricaN identities that exist (both in the west and in the South) we’re given the usual “but Black Americans have gone through so much struggles” , sucessfully dismissing the very real identities of other Blacks, and centering the conversation around themselves (America) once again. 

AfricanS usually enjoy it when people want to engage with their cultureS, it just becomes an issue when people who seemingly want to connect, will ‘edit’ or misappropriate said culture, even things such as names then dismiss AfricanS feelings on it.

 That’s not to say  there aren’t ignorant AfricanS who think they are better than Black Americans of course.

(via hairy-stargate-lesbian)

Identity politics as a mode of organizing is intimately connected to the idea that some social groups are oppressed; that is, that one’s identity as a woman or as a Native American, for example, makes one peculiarly vulnerable to cultural imperialism (including stereotyping, erasure, or appropriation of one’s group identity), violence, exploitation, marginalization, or powerlessness (Young 1990). Identity politics starts from analyses of oppression to recommend, variously, the reclaiming, redescription, or transformation of previously stigmatized accounts of group membership. Rather than accepting the negative scripts offered by a dominant culture about one’s own inferiority, one transforms one’s own sense of self and community, often through consciousness-raising. For example, in their germinal statement of Black feminist identity politics, the Combahee River Collective argued that “as children we realized that we were different from boys and that we were treated different—for example, when we were told in the same breath to be quiet both for the sake of being ‘ladylike’ and to make us less objectionable in the eyes of white people. In the process of consciousness-raising, actually life-sharing, we began to recognize the commonality of our experiences and, from the sharing and growing consciousness, to build a politics that will change our lives and inevitably end our oppression” (Combahee River Collective 1982, 14–15).

Identity politics - a definition

academicsilence:

dreams-from-my-father:

alexandraerin:

bugbrennan:

academicsilence:

myflagisblackandred:

theaetherealmeadow:

academicsilence:

theaetherealmeadow:

academicsilence:

fucknoradfems:

theaetherealmeadow:

This is the Quigley Scale… this makes radscums’ heads explode. As you can see, the boundary between “penis” and “vagina” is not as clean cut as radscums (and for that matter, cissexist society as a whole) makes it out to be. Radscums, when should you start using the mens’ room? Number 3? Number 4? I should point out that the Quigley scale applies only to androgen insensitivity syndrome. There are plenty of other intersex conditions out there that can produce totally different genital arrangments.

[Image description: a diagram scale showing various kinds of genitals. Number one shows what most people would refer to as a penis and scrotum. Number two shows a penis with a slit running on the underside, and a scrotum. Number 3 shows a small penis/large clitoris and a scrotum/labia majora (looks a bit closer to a scrotum). Number 4 shows a smaller penis/clitoris with a scrotum/labia majora (looks a bit closer to labia majora). Number 5 shows a vulva with a somewhat large clitoris. Numbers 6 and 7 show what most people would call a vulva with a “normal” sized clitoris.]

Who’s pwned now, Rad-Fems?

:) 

This is a scale used to assess intersex, not trans, conditions. The scale indicates genitalia outside of expected development; it is specifically used to assess the degree of disorder in genital development. This 1-7 scale was an expansion on the 1-3 scale previously used. These are not examples of “normal” variations in genital development. Please stop acting as if being intersex and being transsexual are the same thing.

Instead of simply copying Wikipedia, why don’t you try reading the actual article on the development of the scale?

I never said that intersex and trans are the same thing and I am quite aware that the scale is used to to grade androgen insensitivity syndrome.

Radical feminism has no critique whatsoever to aim at intersexuality. The problem we have is with trans ideology. By bringing this - a scale to assess intersexuality - in to the discussion, you are indeed conflating the issues. Stop doing that.

I am pointing out the absurdity that comes with biologically essentialist radscum “theory”. If a person with partial androgen insensitivity syndrome is a 3 or a 4 on the scale, and they identify as female, are they cis or trans? It all depends on the doctor’s subjective decision at birth.

Identity is not being assessed here. Sex is not identity. What this scale assesses is the degree of difference in sex. Medically speaking, a person at a 3 or 4 on the scale is not male or female. They are intersex. Did you read the article that I linked to? If you can’t access it, send me a message with a throwaway e-mail and I’ll send it to you.

Whether a person’s sex is male or female is as much of a social construct as the gender roles that accompany them.

No, it’s not. There are not endless functional variations in sexes.

And intersex conditions are totally normal!!! Just because they are less common doesn’t mean they are abnormal. The false belief that they are “disorders” contributes to untold suffering to many intersex people, whom suffer non-consensual genital mutilation at birth.

Yes, the practice of mutilating infants and children without their consent needs to stop. (Hey, did you know Sheila Jeffreys agrees with you on this point?) There is no point in mutilating a person’s genitals for cosmetic reasons - surgery should only be done if there is a functional problem, such as problems with elimination. However, medically speaking, AIS is indeed a “disorder.” It causes more problems then altered genitals. Sterility, osteoporosis and various cancers are all directly related to AIS; these are negative symptoms that need to be treated.

There is nothing disordered about being intersex. About 1.7% of births are intersex, and people with green eyes are not too far ahead at 2.7% so if being intersex is a disorder than so is having green eyes. Also there can be an overlap between being intersex and trans, because when the doctor designates a sex at birth, they are sometimes wrong!!! 

Again, medically, intersexuality is indeed a disorder. These conditions are challenges to the normative functions of the body. Eye color does not (although it is worth noting that the gene expression that results in blue/green eyes is in many ways a negative adaptation, putting people more at risk for skin cancer.)

Once again, do not conflate the issues of intersexuality with the issues of being trans. If a doctor designates a person as male or female at birth when that person is actually intersexual, the issue is not that the doctor should have assigned them a different sex: the issue is that the person should have been designated INTERSEX. If you have a set of genitals, reproductive organs and hormones that fall within the normative ranges for male or female, you are that sex…no matter how much you dislike it.

I don’t get how you radfems are so against gendered socialization yet are so eager to pigeonhole people into categories based on biologically essentialist criteria. It’s so contradictory. By the way, which bathroom should someone who has a 3 or a 4 use? Should they saw themselves in half and go to both? 

So are intersex people allowed in your movement and spaces?

At what part of the scale will they be allowed to go to MichFest?

Are radfems cool with intersex people only if they identify strictly with an intersex identity? If they identify or present with a gender besides intersex (especially considering society doesn’t give too many guidelines for what an intersex gender is), are they “faking it” like all other trans people?

The only thing worth saying to you is to repeat: intersexuality and transsexuality are NOT the same thing. Please remember that. Every time you conflate the two, you reveal both that you have no understanding of biology, and also ignore the very serious problems that face people who have intersexual conditions. 

Trans women are desperate.

“Radical feminism has no critique of intersexuality. We have nothing against these people, their abnormal genitalia, or the disorder they suffer from.”

I am just going to leave you with this brilliant explanation of why the rad fem ideology stands against rationality:

gcvsa:

Yep. And the root of that fallacy is the very fallacy that feminism has been trying to destroy since the very beginning, namely, that biology does not equal destiny.

There is an extreme cognitive dissonance that one is required to ignore if one is to accept radical feminist theory concerning trans women. They construct sex and gender to be both real and unreal at the same time, and this dichotomy is the source of their confusion.

Radical feminism is neither radical, nor is it feminism. It is patriarchy, pure and simple, internalised and used as a weapon by women against women.

Biology does not equal destiny!!!!!!!!!!

So on this post we have seen academicsilence argue at the same time that “Identity is not being assessed here. Sex is not identity.” AND that “If you have a set of genitals, reproductive organs and hormones that fall within the normative ranges for male or female, you are that sex”. 

How can one sex not be an identity but one IS their set of genitals??

Because SEX is different from GENDER. Sex is your biology; you have that; it is set from the sixth week of conception. The only changes that can be made are purely surface. Gender is your set of behaviors and identity, as shaped by your society. How you behave is not set in your biology.

It is this disctinction that radical feminists have fought to establish. And you are demonstrating exactly how deep your ignorance is every time you mix up the two features. Every time a trans activist tries to argue for “neurosex” or that they were always trans, they are making an argument that the behaviors identified as gender are innate - and therefore, justifying the oppressive system of gender.

How about you actually read what’s been said before you get self-congratulatory? You are WRONG.

You see my point?? Their ideology is logically flawed at its essence, contradictory and fallacious. They are so fucking stupid - just look at academicsilence claiming that intersexuality is a ‘disorder’ and then adding that blue/green eyes are not despite being linked to higher risks of skin cancer - and stuck in some massive cognitive dissonance shit! 

If you actually had read what wrote (and, by the way, the link I provided) you would have realized I was pointing out that indeed, there are medical risks with blue/green eyes. However, this trait does not interfere with the normative function of the body: the body is capable of breathing, eating, drinking, and reproducing. Medically, blue/green eyes is not considered a disorder, while intersexuality is. 

They are so fucking pathetic SMH I would laugh if their agenda of hatred wasn’t behind the mass murder and oppression of trans people especially trans WOC like Cece.

This is ridiculous. Stop it with the over-the-top hyperbole. It’s not radical feminists who pose a threat to trans people; it’s males and men. You just like to attack radical feminists because we’re an easy target. You are cowards.

To be a rad fem is to give up on reason.


Radical feminists actually read, rather than pass around false information inside an echo chamber.

To be a rad fem is to be against women.


Radical feminists fight for the liberation of women. You and your friends want to force female women to give up their bodily autonomy, their right to say no, and their freedom of association. You are against women. You want to see the oppression of women continue, so that you can “play” with gender.

So to all of you rad scum pieces of shit, stop calling yourself feminist, you are not!!! You do not stand by nor with me as a cis woman!! You are pulling me, us as women back!!

Take a look in a mirror.

This is absolutely unbelievable. The more you speak / type, the more you actually prove my point, which is: Radical feminist stands AGAINST rationality!! Your reply was a remarkable collection of absurdities, yet you don’t see it which speaks volume about the intense cognitive dissonance your peers and you are in. 

  • First of all regarding GENDER and SEX: Did you really claim that rad fems have fought to establish the distinction??? Are you fucking serious?? If anything, rad fem ideology is based on conflating both while pretending to make a distinction, which is contradictory and fallacious. But you didn’t actually counter-argued my point at all, what you did instead was a pathetic attempt at derailing by bringing up neuroscience. I never mentioned that and not all queer people believe in it, especially gender-fluid people. You have still to address the theoretical flaw of your movement. I will just ask you one simple question: Since you admit that SEX and GENDER are different, that “Sex is your biology” and that “Gender is your set of behaviors and identity”why do rad fems keep on aligning womanhood with female genitalia?? WHY???? Answer this simple question!! Why is your whole fucking rhetoric is based around the vagina, clitoris and uterus??? Why do you think that trans women are just as oppressive as cis men despite the fact that gender is a social construct of patriarchy?? WHY?? How can all of these contradictory things make sense to you?? 
  • On “Radical feminists fight for the liberation of women” : “You and your friends want to force female women to give up their bodily autonomy, their right to say no, and their freedom of association. You are against women”  BWAHAHAHAHAHAHHAHAHAHAHAAH OMG what the actual fuck was this?? You pretend to fight for women then talk about “female women”?? To think that you had the audacity to claim that rad fems fight for the separation of GENDER and SEX and then come up with this BS is so sad. You are not making sense at all but you can’t see it because you have thrown rationality away. Also, what this short bit shows is that your friends and you are convinced to have a monopolistic ownership of womanhood. You are not more of a woman than me or any other trans woman. If anything you are the ones against “bodily autonomy”!! You are the one against self-determination and hence body autonomy!! You are the one claiming to have a supreme authority into deciding who is a woman and who is not!! You are no way better than patriarchy in this regard!! YOU ARE AGAINSTWOMEN! You are oppressive, abusive and erasive!
  • As for Green/blue eyes and intersexuality: Once again you do not make any fucking sense!! “Medically, blue/green eyes is not considered a disorder, while intersexuality is. “ As a wannabe feminist, you should at least know better than mindlessly using the medical sector as a figure of authority. You should know that as an institution, it , too, is invested in upholding and promoting patriarchy against trans and cis women. You should fucking know that! So your “medically” here is totally irrelevant!! What is relevant though is the fact that you think that intersexuality is a disorder because, unlike having blue/green eyes, it “interfere with the normative function of the body: the body is capable of breathing, eating, drinking, and reproducing” O_o I couldn’t believe this when I first read this. Making such claim is a proof that you have no fucking clue what intersexuality is , yet you are still desperately claiming that it is a disorder!!
  • The bit that got me the most and made me nauseous is you referring to the oppression of trans people, the fact that their life expectancy is 23yo as an “over-the-top hyperbole” . Yeah right, the fact that trans people are being killed in mass, had their lives destroyed, are dehumanized, constantly under the assault of the hetero-normative society is simply a “over-the-top hyperbole”What kind of monstrous sociopath are you?? This is why I refuse to let monstrous individuals like you obviously incapable to relate to anyone unlike them, to talk on my behalf!! You do not represent me!! You do not represent any decent person who has a minimum of respect for human life!! HOW DARE YOU?? WHAT KIND OF PERSON ARE YOU?? And yep I just called the fucking sociopath that you are a fucking bitch!! You are inhumane!! You can now go a cry a bucket of cis scum tears while trans people are fucking dying because of your hatred and you think it is an “over-the-top hyperbole” ! 
  • It’s not radical feminists who pose a threat to trans people; it’s males and men. You just like to attack radical feminists because we’re an easy target. You are cowards.”At this point to be honest, I am overwhelmed wit exasperation!! Seriously, you are either dumber than a bag of rocks or you are under a spell! How can trans women, which you refer to as “males” take part in their own oppression and murder?? HOW?? Where you drunk when you typed this sentence?? Have you heard of logic?? Also are you really referring at  rad fems as ‘easy target’ when they are mostly white/middle-class/cis in a white supremacist and hetero-normative and cissexist society??? Are you serious?? Well I just give up on you, I have met chickens with more common sense than you and your bunch of hateful sociopaths!

Once again you proved my points:

To be a rad fem is to give up on reason.

To be a rad fem is to be against women.

You tried


(via academicsilence-deactivated2012)