​Then and Now- The Negro Conception towards White Women

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Yeah; I reckon it was because I knew I oughtn’t‘ve wanted to. I reckon it was because they say we black men do that anyhow. They say we rape white women when we got the clap and they say we do that because we believe that if we rape white women then we will get rid of the clap…when folks say things like that about you. You whipped before you born.
Bigger, tell me, did you feel more attraction for Mary than the women of your own race?…Naw. But they say that. It ain’t true.

Native Son by Richard Wright

Few weeks ago, I read Richard Wright’s Native Son over again, and I must confess that it is one of the most powerful and truthful novels I have ever come across. It doesn’t just capture the scenery and life of Negros; it also gives a futuristic evolvement of the Black society which is now being captured in an aspect of BlackLivesMatter Movement.

Way back, the Black men have often been accused of wanting white women. They are accused of fetishism towards the idea of what it feels like being with a white woman. Bigger Thomas, one of Native Son characters, attests to this by stating in the quote above (View Excerpt).

While reading Native Son, it brought out some stereotypes perceived towards the Black Man. When a Black Man is alone with a White Woman, most likely is there a motive for rape. Even though it doesn’t happen, he is confined to the conception that Black Men often want to bed White women.

During my final year in school, I did some projects on Negritude, and doing the course of the research, I came across some criticism towards the hypocrisy of Black men, especially those at the forefront of Negritude movement. While fighting for the Black man against Racism, they were quick in taking white women as their spouse, one of those mentioned was: Leopold Senghor, the first president of Senegal who preached forgiveness towards the white skin, mostly especially towards France, a country where he later resided.

If you have been watching “Grown-ish”, a TV series by Kenya Barris, there was a particular episode where the Twins discussed how black women were below the hierarchy of least dated women, and even how many Black men chilled with white ladies.

Call it Bi-racial relationship; say that people are looking past the skin colour when it comes to love; I think that there is fetishism for white ladies and also the light complexion women. Sometimes, I think that the stereotype has become true. Even in a country like Nigeria where we would be considered Black Skin, the admiration towards light complexion is so farfetched that it is revealed in the entertainment industry most especially in music videos where dark skin ladies are often rejected because of how they look. Sometimes, when you read some actress stories, you hear statements like their being dark played a role in their difficulty to getting some major roles in the movie industry.

Or whenever I sit down to watch Zee World with my siblings, I hear them say- do you know that it’s the Black Indians who are poor? They do the menial jobs. The black Indians often have no say in that country, and I begin to wonder- Can a Black person be a racist especially towards his own country fellow?

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Conversation with Osas- The Abnormality of the Nigerian Writing Culture

 

So think you can write? Because you believe you can write, you think you have imaginative skills? But now you written, and no one have read your work, you blame the Nigerian society for its bad reading habit, you say you have to make a name before you are known. Dear unskilled writer, I am also unskilled, so hold on a second, and read my conversation with Osas concerning everything you need to know about writing a book especially for the Nigerian audience.

For a very long time, I asked myself why people underappreciated Art; why amidst music, painting, photography, film and literature, it seemed as if we paid less attention to literature. I grew up reading a lot of African novels, most especially Nigerian ones; I remember reading many lantern books like Born to Lead, who else also read it? And then gradually I began reading other books that got me acquitted with the works of Achebe, Efuru, and many others till I started picking out the set of books I wanted to read until one day I read Purple Hibiscus, and for the first time, I fell in love with a writer, wanted to be a writer, and wanted to be an image of Chimamanda, so I screamed Chimamanda’s name every day until 2013 when we went to the University of Ibadan and my dad stepped out of the car and came back with Americanah, Chimamanda’s latest novel, and that was how he later got me all of her books at different times. The first time I heard Mariama Ba’s name was from my mother,  I was around 8 years old, and I vividly remember this quote she always said aloud- “Never marry the man you love, but the man that loves you” then she would stand up and add  “Yesterday you were divorced, today I am a widow” my mum was a drama queen, she would dramatise everything for us, chip them in the stories she told us at night,  and then lament on how my uncle borrowed her books and never returned them. Nevertheless, that didn’t mean I didn’t read foreign books, I just grew up reading more of African books.

I was reading Native Son by Richard Wright all over again, and Osas suggested I read a particular foreign novel, one thing lead to another and I asked Osas, Why don’t you want to patronize Nigerian books? In plain words he simply said- Nigerian writers simply don’t think. “I grew up reading books from different part of the world from Gulliver travelsAnimal farmand many others. I think Nigerian writers especially of the older generation wrote good stories. They wrote according to their time, and I consider Soyinka’s “The interpreters” as one of the good books”.

Osas suggested some foreign books to me which I would read and post their review. While he also suggested American gods, Game of thrones etc, I told him that I would just stick to watching the series, and then he said, that’s the problem.  “When you watch the movie, you think you have watched a blockbuster, but then you read the book and discover that it is much better than the movie. I love writers that write good books, good books that makes you think, imagine and then question yourself on how the hell a mad writer wrote such mad book that’s really amazing. When a Nigerian writes a book, he doesn’t give his audience the opportunity to imagine, he simply pets them like a baby and spells it all out, and most times you can foretell the end of the book and even when there’s a twist, it’s a stupid one. A person writes a book in his room about bad conversations in his head and he thinks he has written a good book, but all we do here is play on words and write the same thing in different ways just to make a voluminous book”. I told Osas that Nigerians write what is peculiar to them, their stories, history and heritage, but then he said, they know how to follow all these historical series that are in print forms and don’t know better ways to tell their stories. Especially in this age of WhatsApp and Instagram, we need to learn to bring writing closer to the people, and this I agreed with him.

 

Lately, I have been reading some romance novels, and yesterday I read one, and I was like this is better than the rest. Unlike some of the novels that described love and sexual relationship, this particular book made me happy. The writer didn’t give one the pleasure of allowing us to read about this favourite characters making love, yet I wondered what kept one reading and then I concluded that what made her book special was her ability to sustain the readers and make them hope that she would vividly spell it all out at the end of the book. She was able to describe foreplay with different words at different times with different meaning to describe actual romance. After reading the novel, I borrowed another one from my neighbor, and so I decided to glace through the pages and behold I started seeing “And they kissed and made love”.  I said to myself, these are the kind of books Osas have been condemning.  The books peculiar to Nigerian writers’ style, the books that helps the readers conclude and offer nothing. I had read other romance novels, both good and bad, but this particular one was just out of it, I didn’t need to the writer to tell me that they kissed and made love, I just needed her to explore her vocabulary and think out of the box, and then I asked myself all the questions Osas asked me-Nifemi, when would Nigerian writers learn to write brilliant spy, sci-fi, and other intelligent novels?  I am adding to those questions, when will Nigerians learn to write captivating romance novels? But then one of my friends replied- It would take a lot of time because Nigerian writers are scared of criticism and its readers are pretenders.

PS: What makes a book intriguing to you?

Stepping into March with Blogging

I have asked myself countless of times why I quit blogging and a whole lot of other things last year, up till now I am still unsure if I have a valid answer except excuses. During my long vacation from blogging, a lot of things changed, *hands in the air* one of which is, I am now a graduate plus NYSC journey is still a struggle. Also, I was able to have a lot of time for myself to be able to think, learn and understand a few things. One of which is coming to terms with the coexistence of Femininity and Masculinity. Quite a number of people know me for my feminist opinions, and at one point, some of my readers tagged some of my posts as “becoming aggressive” and this caught my attention. Fortunately, I just encountered Masculinity, and I must confess that stumbling upon masculinity has given me the opportunity of exploring from a wider point of view, and as I start this whole blogging journey over again, I want to try as much as possible not just to discuss feminism, but embrace masculinity discourse as well. 

I hope my readers would give me the opportunity to resume blogging, and I really apologize for staying away for too long. To Funke Olotu, thank you for always staying true, she has been pushing me towards blogging again.

Happy New Month!!!

Three months of Mellow

Unusual bag Mansur Gavriel  Famous bags from New York brand Mansur Gavriel — the object of desire for all fashionistas. The unusual design, soft Italian leather, bright palette, as well as limited edition collection is characterized works of designer Gabriela Hurst.:

“The purpose of life is to live it, to taste experience to the utmost, to reach out eagerly and without fear for newer and richer experience.”
― Eleanor Roosevelt

Hello Everyone,
It’s been quite sometime since I blogged- my apologies; however, ‘m back with few details of my life offline. Have I been fine? Hmm…I ‘d say quite okay. A lot have happened since I last blogged- crossing over to a new year without writing, dealing with school issues, coping with stress and not enough sleep 🙂 , but all the same ‘m still happy. I found myself exploring other dimensions of life, appreciating the essence of living, holding on to family, and re-defining friendship. Though things haven’t been so smooth, I always live one day at a time. Thank you for reading 🙂

How have you been these past months?

Feel free to share your experiences in the comment section. I always reply!

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Email: thenifeminist@gmail.com

Escaping from the Inevitable: Death

I chose this picture because of the lines. I love how you can see the curve of the ribcage and that it is partially hidden by the girl showing the two sides of a person.:

“Life is pleasant. Death is peaceful. It’s the transition that’s troublesome.

Once in a while, I love to take a break from the harshness of life, spoil myself and watch the world still from afar. I enjoy every moment that comes along, and play safe without missing out on the goodies of life. You know why? Because life is too short too stay on hold waiting for tomorrow.

I watched a video, not quite long , in which lots of people, both old and young were involved in a fatal accident, and then I began thinking; what purpose does death serve? How essential is the value of life? Is there anything called tomorrow/ future, how true is life after death?

Unfortunately, I have no answers to any of the above questions. If you do, please kindly share in the comment section. The only thing I have got to say is, I am skeptical about the the word “Future or tomorrow”. Often times, the future is always now. It’s either you do it now, or never. We say to ourselves, when I get to a certain age, I would start this and this, and when we are finally there, life would seem like it didn’t move an inch, and even if it did, something likely gets along the way; the horror of life is death.

Death is a killer of unaccomplished dreams; the one people hope to realize; but what then is the reward for living, and sweating/toiling for tomorrow if  the reward is nothing but a short life, unaccomplished dream, tough life  or a life worthy of not being lived?  Why then do one need to work for tomorrow, when that tomorrow is undefined, unclear, and bleak?

Silent whispers for you today-Lord, let my life be an accomplishment. and breath forth a life worthy of being lived into me.

Thank you for reading. Feel free to leave a comment. I always reply!

Don’t forget to get in touch with me on all social platforms @thenifeminist

Email: thefeminist@gmail.com

 

 

My view on becoming Friendly

New speedpainting on my YouTube the link is in my bio #art #drawing #painting…:

What I want to say to young girls is forget about likability. If you start thinking about being likable you are not going to tell your story honestly because you are going to be so concerned with not offending, and that’s going to ruin your story so forget about likability.- Chimamanda Adichie

I truly apologize for my inconsistency in blogging. Lately, ‘v been stressed out especially with school and stuffs. Worse still lectures haven’t fully started and ‘m already exhausted. So I made some resolutions, and one of which is to become more friendly, or amiable because I get comments like ‘m too formal, I have high expectations for people, too cold and stuffs like that, and so I decided to chill.

Well, here’s my review on becoming friendly. Firstly, I don’t think I like it; secondly, it leaves one vulnerable to lots of odd and annoying attitudes or behaviors that you either have to condone or reject which could cause an unhealthy annoyance. Though it can get one a couple of familiar faces, I actually think keeping a small circle is the best. That way, life doesn’t get too complicated and you finally have little or no unwarranted attitudes to deal with or even have to be okay with what you aren’t okay with.

Question: What kind of friends do you keep?

Thank you for reading. Feel free to leave a comment. I always reply!

Don’t forget to get in touch with me on all social platforms @thenifeminist

Email: thefeminist@gmail.com