The African Woman On Social Media: Where Is Your Dignity?

In a recent article, l wrote about how the Nigerian women in Nollywood have misrepresented the African woman. This article is a follow up to it.

The African Woman On Social Media, Where Is Your Dignity?

By Adeola Aderounmu

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Adeola Aderounmu

In a recent article, l wrote about how the Nigerian women in Nollywood have misrepresented the African woman.  (https://adeola.blog/2018/02/24/nollywood-is-failing-africa-in-the-appearances-of-african-women/).This article is a follow up to it.

It is now generally accepted that for the African woman to be accepted as pretty or beautiful, she needs to be wearing a foreign hair popularly called wigs. The wigs come in various colours, sizes, forms and dimensions. As I previously pointed out, the industry provides jobs for several women and is a multibillion-dollar industry in Africa and globally.

The target is simple. It is the African woman who has lost her pride and sense of dignity. The present generation of African women dominating the social media, film industry and other social platforms have lost it completely. They are rich, they are famous and they are celebrities. But they lack one thing: self-dignity.

Again, l will go back memory lane. I am 46 years old and I remember growing up in Lagos, South-West Nigeria. My mother never liked the idea of my sisters putting chemicals on their hair and she frowned at it. Her take was that my sisters must always braid their hair the African way. It was the same for many families. Our parents did all they could to persuade our sisters and even some of us guys from using chemicals on our hair. The barber shop it was for us.

But just a couple of years down the lane. The dignity of the African woman has been completely eroded. She takes no pride in the colour of her skin. She takes no pride in the texture of her hair. She takes no pride in her curly, tangled hair. The African woman wants straight hair. It is so bad that so many African girls and ladies would not appear in public without the foreign hair.

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Omotola Talade-Ekeinde (@realomosexy)

It is going to be one of those huge tasks that we have ahead of us in Africa to reverse and revert the trend. But it is a cause some of us must continue to remind ourselves of. The celebrities and stars on Nigerian and African screens have failed Nigeria and Africa. They are big stars and they are the biggest hope of a trend reverse.

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Funke Akindele Bello (@funkejenifaakindele)

A few of our stars are featured here. There are several more. But we just need all of them to take up the cause and help us reverse the trend. They may also need help themselves because they will not be able to do something about it if they don’t realise that they too have lost their sense of dignity and African-ness. But with several million followers on Instagram and twitter, the best way to bring back the pride of the African woman is through these social celebrities and actresses.

Some may argue that they use the wigs for acting and work, but that argument does not hold water. What is wrong with acting and working with the African hair? Why must we act, work, live and go around with foreign hair? Why are we not proud of who we are and what nature endowed us with?

 

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Toyin Abraham (@toyin_abraham)

We need Africans to promote Africa. We need ourselves to sustain and maintain our values, culture and way of life. We have lost our languages. We have lost our mode of dressings. We cannot afford to lose our heads and our brains with the hairs. Something urgent need to be done.

In our schools, from the primary to the university, awareness need to be created about the pride of the African woman. One day l wrote to @iamlizzyjay about her natural hair and l implored her to keep it African. But l see how hard it is to remain pure and natural in the industry because she wore wigs a few times and went back to natural a few times.

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Linda Ikeji (@officiallindaikeji)

@calabarchic does not even know where to stay. She is also back and forth. She’s trying to keep her natural hair but the industry and the “norm” for what a woman in Nigeria should look like is creating a lot of confusion. It is like if you are not wearing wig or a foreign hair, you are local. That is how terrible the image and dignity of the African woman had been battered.

 

You have to feel sorry for the African woman especially from the entertainment industry point of view. They need help. We need help because their takes have destroyed our values and expectations of the women that nature gave us. We need a return to the basics.

 

 

We need role models of African origins to keep African culture and tradition.

I look forward to the day that African women will look 100% African again.

 

 

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Nollywood Is Failing Africa In The Appearances of African Women

African women should be proud to wear their natural hairs. They are beautiful just the way they are.

Nollywood Is Failing Africa

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By Adeola Aderounmu

A few weeks ago l watched some films on a Nollywood TV channel. My attention was drawn to the appearances of the women in the various films.

The appearances of Nigerian women in Nollywood films are nothing to write home about. It may have been so before l left home in 2002 but definitely not as rampant as it is now. Regardless, the rise of the use of artificial hairs, now rampant in both real life and in the Nigerian movie industry is highly condemnable.

The almost complete disappearance of the African hairstyles in Nollywood films is extremely disturbing. In the movies l’d seen 100% of the women are wearing imported wigs/hairs. No one wore their natural hair.

It seems that our women are not proud of their natural beauties. This scenario is shameful and tasteless. It is actually also disgusting!

The continent of Africa had been suffering from colonial mentality for more than 500 years. When are we going to revert to our originalities? If not now, then when?

We have been lied to that we are inferior. We have been lied to that we have lower intelligence levels. We have been told that our skin is black and bad. We have been looked down upon and we continue to fight around the world that we are equal to or above other races.

We can leave our political calamities for once as the basis of comparison with other places around the world, though that is also a very difficult thing to do. For our political lives in Africa and how politics have been used to separate and destroy us cannot be overlooked. We are first judged by the outcomes of our political decisions and the implications on our socio-economic situations.

However, it becomes also very disturbing and worrying that we don’t seize the opportunities on other platforms we have to show ourselves in good light. By ourselves, we reduce or destroy our dignities. The appearances of the Nigerian women on Nollywood, are an admittance that African women have lesser dignity than other women around the world. The only way to turn this sad situation around is to reverse the trend, let African women look 100% African.

Nollywwod has the opportunity to showcase the beauty of the African woman but all she is showing is copied version of Hollywood women and copied version of some international celebrities that do not depict the true glory and beauty of Africa.

It is not a good development for Nigeria and definitely not for Africa when we replace our cultures, our traditions, our appearances and our dignities with foreign objects. We’ve lost it.

Nollywood in particular need to do a search within and start a campaign to promote Africa to the tune of 100%. Someone is going to ask what the roles of the government is in Nollywood that would make them do this. O well, Africa belong to all of us and we need to look inward and promote our traditional hairstylists and save billions of dollars that we waste annually on importation of disgusting wigs and dead people’s hairs.

There is a lot Nollywood can do for itself if it starts to act as a promoter of culture and custodian of tradition rather than a neocolonial stooge in the heart of Africa. We should promote our hairstyles and help African women and hairstylists travel round the world to showcase our hairstyles.

The onus is not on the women only. It is on all of us and our perception of beauty. Our men should be involved in promoting the glory of Africa too. They also must appear and dress African in our movies.

Viewers and watchers of the African movie industry have a role to play in appreciating our men and women as they do their best to maintain the African culture and tradition. We cannot condemn them by comparing them to foreign Hollywood stars. We are Africans.

It is Africa that should be exporting her tradition and culture because they are pure and golden. In these tradition and culture lie some hidden wealth of Africa that should be tapped just the same way we are imploring government to tap into both the natural and human resources in order to build a better continent to the envy of the world.

A word is enough for the wise. Let us join hands in various ways to promote these ideas and ideals. Africans in the diaspora also have their own roles to play. Keep your hair natural, keep your looks simple. Don’t change who you are because you are abroad. Be recognisable!

Share this view, spread the concept. Let’s win back our continent and our originalities. Every little way counts!

Follow me on twitter  @aderinola

aderounmu@gmail.com

RIP Sam Loco Efe

Adeola Aderounmu

One of Nigeria’s finest actors Sam Loco Efe passed away early this week.

He was there on stage in LANGBODO during FESTAC 77.

He was a fine actor in Winds Against My Soul, one of Nigeria’s finest soap opera that featured in the 80s.

Sam Loco Efe was a major actor in NOLLYWOOD. He is prolific and versatile acting in various roles and in different capacities.

Sam loved life and he never pretended about his love for the cigarrete, booze and women. He will be greatly missed by friends, fans and families.

RIP.