1. You are very different from other (insert African country) people I know – Well, could it be because I am a different person?
2. When I was in nursery school I had a friend from (insert African country) – Hold on, should I nominate you for the Nobel peace prize?
3. Do you tan in the sun? – No, I’m an alien and this isn’t really skin, it’s rubber. Erm, what’cha think?
4. Your (insert European language) is so good – And considering I’ve spoken it all my life, why shouldn’t it be?
5. You have a typical African figure – OK, this might likely be a compliment, but we could do without the stereotyping of an African woman’s body. We come in all shapes and sizes just like any other woman.
6. Your name is so difficult to pronounce – well, Klu Klux Klan is not the simplest either, aye
7. Any questions or comments about hair as a concept rather than a style – In other words ‘I dig your new hair do’ is OK, ‘Is your new hair do your real hair?’ is not.—
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Hi! I’m Minna Salami. I’m a writer, blogger, columnist, lecturer and speaker and the founder of the feminist blog, MsAfropolitan, which connects feminism to contemporary culture from an Africa-centred perspective. I’ve been listed alongside Michelle Obama and Angelina Jolie as one of “twelve women changing the world” by ELLE and my work has been used as a resource and case study at universities around the world. Like what you just read? Sign up above to receive new posts directly in your inbox.