When I tell them to submit a content analysis of a poem or a literature in their language, they’d thunder, “No Sir!” When I ask them if they know at least 20 African writers, they’d look at themselves and nod in ignorance.
Oh, our history is still written by the Whites – they’d say Mary Slessor stopped the killing of twins; that Mungo Park discovered the Niger River, etc – and we bask in this empty euphoria.
Nigeria for instance, wasn’t even named by an African. She wasn’t even divided into zones by an African. The history of the South African apartheid wasn’t even written by the blacks. The toxic emotions that led to the Rwandan genocide and the divisions of a people was a product of the influence of the Whites. The “Bantu Philosophy,” wasn’t written by a Bantu person.
Put in different countries on earth, our problems (as Africans) are very much the same because “the white man, whether in the majority or minority is always on top.” On our own lands, when the white man came for a visit, we gave them a seat. They sat. But afterwards, they said, “get out!” Archbishop Desmond Tutu, a Nobel peace prize winner had since written this in his “No Future Without Forgiveness”
This is one truth I had learnt from studies in the Philosophy of History namely: that the victors, the conquerors always write history. It speaks of a rare truth that the majority of us have drunk for centuries – that until the white man comes and write your history, you have no history!
In (their) main stream media, they preach about the “poornography” of Africans. They tell us, “look niggas, it’s your poverty that has kept you where you are, not us!” Now we blame poverty for everything; beginning from families to worship centers and to political offices, the prayer against poverty is the most understood and the most uniting.
In a bid to showcase how we’ve been favoured than our kinsmen, and our desire to sit with the whites on the table of neo-colonialism, we gamble and steal our resources as well as share same, selfie-in-mind, with the white man.
Miriam Makeba had known, and revealed these margins in her 1969 interview; and like her I don’t speak now of an organic hatred for the Whites. I speak/write of an acknowledgement of the hatred sold to us – the one we are yet to see; the hatred for our own stories and our own histories as well as the hatred that’ll make anyone of us thunder ignorantly, “No, sir!”
Author: David Francis E.
My name is David Francis and the nature of my engagements include:
Philosophy (University of Jos, Nigeria); Researcher (St. Albert’s Institute, Fayit-Fadan, Kaduna, Nigeria); Editor (Sapientia African Leadership Formation Programme, e. V Address: Badenstedter Street, 99 30453, Hannover, Germany); Literature (S. E. M. S. Nassarawa State, Nigeria); Former Associate Editor, “Periscope Magazine,” Abuja and Columnist, “Seekers Delight Magazine,” Kaduna.
I simply try to question the ‘happy darkness’ by encouraging more hands to minimize ignorance. Just a dose of knowledge, is enough in training the mind, to conform to nothing except truth. Let’s ride this train together!
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