Oyinda is one of my closest friends and because she is so awesome I decided to feature her on my blog where I have asked pretty random questions about her life. I love reading about different people; it kinda makes me reflect on life??? anyway - I hope you do too! The first section asks questions more to do with the world and social things, and the second about herself.
1) What is your opinion on the demoralization of women of colour by media in the 21st century?
If we're defining demoralization as causing someone to lose confidence or hope then I think that far back before the 21st century women of colour have been demoralized. Women of colour is almost a double negative, because we're women and we're not, to put it bluntly, white. I figured that as time progressed and future generations became their own thinkers you'd expect someone other than the oppressed to stand up and say 'hey, isn't this wrong.' And people are but not enough people, and when they do it's mainly in the context of white women. In my opinion, demoralization in the 21st century is subtle and more or less accepted. It's ingrained in our minds because when you flick through magazines, or you turn on the TV or watch a film, that isn't primarily about slavery and civil rights, all you see is women of one colour, and that becomes the ideal of beauty. Which is depressing if inadvertently you're taking in all those things. I did and now I've had to unlearn them. The media treats women of colour like trash, they undermine us and when we speak out they stick 'bossy black woman' on our foreheads. As mad as I am, the 21st century is where more of us are standing up and saying no to the crappy bullshit we've had to put up with.
2) What have you done (like protesting or campaigning, petitioning) for world issues and if not what would you like to do?
With regards to the issue above, I haven't done anything monumental, what I've done is small and it really only has to do with me. If you want to change the world then you have to start small and watch it progress so I no longer look in the mirror and compare my appearance to European standards of beauty. I try not to compare myself to anyone. What I would like to do is have the opportunity to write something that embodies my beliefs and experiences.
3) Who is your feminist inspiration?
Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. I remember about two years ago I had an afternoon of enlightenment where I went through all her TED talks and scanned through bits of her work that I could find. When I listened to her talk, she made feel at ease with myself and she had ideas that I never thought I could voice and on the plus side she was also Nigerian. I've always felt distant from my culture but through her books I felt reconnected with my birthplace. She's my feminist inspiration because there are things that I don't agree, regarding the difference in expectations for gender, that she voiced. Things I always felt were unfair but was too afraid to say anything. She was a beacon of hope when it came to becoming myself, and appreciating my gender and the colour of my skin, because mainstream feminism tends stick to gender only but that's not the only that limits me, and she talks about that.
4) Your opinion on stereotypes?
Prejudice is built on stereotypes, and stereotypes almost always negatively affect ethnic minorities. Negative stereotypes just lead to be fearing things that shouldn't be feared, like people's personalities and what they choose to wear. Assuming someone is a certain way without knowing them, based on gender, ethnicity etc. is wrong and offensive. It's one of the reasons why sexism and racism is still ongoing. Stereotypes are damaging, and in general people shouldn't stick labels on others if they don't actually know them. For instance the common stereotype of young black males as thugs. There are police who most likely believe that and that's dangerous because it can lead to bias.
5) What are you most concerned about with regards to the modern teenage lifestyle (if you have any)?
It's more worry than concern, and I'm part of that equation as well. I don't know what it is but I just have this fear for the future. This generation, and the modern teenage lifestyle involves speaking out on what we believe is wrong, calling people out on the crap and in general just using our voices and our creative freedoms, but there are so many loud people out there with conflicting views and I just worry that there's going to be a loud bang.
~ Comment below your opinions! ~
~ Comment below your opinions! ~