by Nana B.
African love is a love that is defined by our culture without the constraints of Eurocentricity. Is love to the African man and woman the urgency expressed in touch or is it the raw rhetoric used to express our feelings for each other? The lack of conversation surrounding our own perception of love in the African community is serving as a major disadvantage to the growth and health of our people. We look to movies such as The Notebook and Titanic as the models of everlasting love. Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet represents for many of us the ultimate sacrifice for love. This is a problem that grows with the advancement of technology and the media within our reach.
The love between a Somali woman and Somali man in Mogadishu, the cross continental relationship of an Ethiopian man and Ghanaian woman, the love shared between a Jamaican man and Gullah woman differs extremely from what we are shown on the silver screens of western nations. Love and Basketball and Love Jones are not the ultimate portrayals of African love. They don’t even come close. The love shared between Teacake and Janie in Zora Neale Hurston’s Their Eyes Were Watching God should not be end-all of what love is supposed to be for African people.
In response to the horrors of civil wars, slavery, and colonialism, we have often been forced to suppress and hide our emotions as means of survival and defense. The fight to keep our identities (languages and names) has always been tied to the fight to protect and provide for our families, and for over four centuries these basic human rights have be devastated by the European [and Arab] imperialism.
Don’t get it twisted, we are meant for each other, yet we have convinced ourselves that the African population [worldwide] is not large enough to continue our legacy. We refuse to confront and heal the wounds of the past, which has turned into the reality that many of us don’t want to bring African children into the world out of fear, shame, ignorance, and selfishness. We don’t want to speak of the pain of rape and abuse (verbal and physical) inflicted upon our men and women for over four centuries, nor do we want to examine the European roots of this violation and its evolution in our community, where we now see African men and women picking up where master and mistress left off.
This is not a F*** the white man/woman article, this is an article that wants to examine why we f*** the white man/woman… Why do we hate anything that reminds us of ourselves? I believe that African women and African men are meant for each other historically, biologically, physically, and psychologically, and spiritually. But in an attempt to conform and move past the pains of slavery and colonization, we have managed to convince ourselves that color doesn’t matter. This is a serious problem that needs to be addressed in our homes, amongst our people, within our novels and movies, and ultimately all throughout the global African community
I am not here to define what African love is but I am here to be the catalyst of a revolution taking place in the hearts of Africans world-wide. What is your take on what African love is or should be? Once you have a firm understanding of your own perception of African love, talk about it. Our words are our most powerful weapon in a world bent on the destruction of all things pure and untouched by the “wonders” of modern globalization, a world focused on the destruction of tradition and culture, a world that is against the advancement of African people.
We have so many love stories that have yet to be written. Even throughout all of the chaos, throughout all of the jubilation…African love has never (and will never) cease to exist.
True Love = Pure Love = African love
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