Monday, June 4, 2018

A Conversation w/Dr Carmen Hutchinson Miller Pt3 - What about us?

Video Pt 3- Conclusion
How much do Afro-Costa Ricans really know about the struggle of African-Americans?

“We didn’t want anybody telling us anything about Africa, much less calling us Africans. In hating Africa and in hating the Africans, we ended up hating ourselves, without even realizing it. Because you can’t hate the roots of a tree and not hate the tree. You can’t hate your origin and not end up hating yourself. You can’t hate Africa and not hate yourself.”

-Malcolm X

Below Story Source  Why Our African Identity Matters By Dwayne Wong (Omowale)
One of the challenges that people of African descent continue to face from the days of slavery is the question of identity.
Many of us still struggle with what we perceive to be conflicting national and ethnic identities. This is especially true in America where our historical experiences create what W.E.B. Du Bois described as a “double consciousness.” African Americans are a people that were ripped from the African continent and most still know very little about their African roots, so many African Americans simply do not see themselves as Africans. Yet, centuries of discrimination and being treated as second-class citizens has also taught African Americans that they still are not fully American either. In fact, the history of African Americans up until the present has largely been a history of struggling to be accepted by America.

 This was largely done by design. The slave masters stripped Africans of their names, their languages, their culture and customs, and of their history. Not only this, but Africa has always been depicted as a negative place filled with savages and cannibals. Generations of African people living in the Americas only knew of Africa as the “Dark Continent.” Pro-slavery propaganda insisted that it was actually a benefit for an African to be taken away from their African homeland and this was a view even some Africans came to accept. 
We are the only group of people that came to the Americas by force. 
We did not leave Africa in search of a better life or in search of the American Dream. If anything, we actually lost a better standard of living by being taken to America.When the plague was devastating Europe, civilizations such as Mali and Songhai were thriving in Africa. Today we still view Africa as a “Dark Continent” which is filled with misery, poverty, and starvation. 
Secondly, we have the richest and most diverse background of any other ethnic group in the Americas. When we look at our historical roots we can trace them to various kingdoms such as Songhai, Mali, Asante, Dahomey, Kongo, Benin, Oyo, Futa Jallon and Kuba. Most African people in the Americas have a basic understanding of slavery and what that entailed, but our history is much more complex than that.
Finally, the term African is a term that connects African Americans to a global community of people of African descent that are connected by a common history and a common experience. Whether you are Jamaican, Guyanese, Trinidadian, Ghanaian, Nigerian, or Kenyan you have felt the sting of British colonialism. Haitians, Martiniquans, Senegalese, and Guineans have all felt the sting of French colonialism. Brazilians, Angolans, and Mozambicans have all suffered through Portuguese colonialism. And just about every group of African people in the world has experienced American racism in one form or another. The experiences may differ, but all people of African descent have been victimized by racism and oppression in one form or another.
I think one of the reasons why so many African people living in the United States and the Caribbean do not like thinking of themselves as African is because of the collective ignorance that many of us still have about our African roots and why those roots are important.
When the education system is geared mostly towards European history and culture, and the media depictions of Africa are still largely negative and misinformed, it’s easy to understand why many people of African descent would look at their own ancestral roots negatively.
Read the entire article here

"What about us?" My conversation with Dr Miller below

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

No comments:

Post a Comment