Don't touch my hair! 🙅🏽♀️
🙅🏽♀️“is there someone under that? hahaha”
🙅🏽♀️“but how do you manage it all?!”
🙅🏽♀️“it’s just so wild!”
🙅🏽♀️“you should tame it because it’s not professional”
🙅🏽♀️“it’s alright for you, you have `good hair´”
🙅🏽♀️“it’s a shame you don’t have good hair, you should relax it cause it looks better”
🙅🏽♀️“is it real?”
🙅🏽♀️“can i touch -“ (as fingers delve into it)
🙅🏽♀️“oi! nice hair - hahaha”
🙅🏽♀️“oh my god look at her hair”
🙅🏽♀️“i wish my hair was like yours, it’s just so crazy cool!”
🙅🏽♀️“your hair isn’t afro enough”
🙅🏽♀️“i had dreadlocks when i went to Africa on my year out, where did you get yours done”
🙅🏽♀️“you’re so brave to go out like that!”
🙅🏽♀️“is that a weave? it doesn’t look real”
🙅🏽♀️“do you think i can get mine to do that, hahah”
🙅🏽♀️“oi! scary spice!”
🙅🏽♀️ “you look like you’ve been dragged through a bush backwards!”
🙅🏽♀️“what the fuck is that?”
These are just some of the potpourri of comments strangers have felt the need to tell me about (and on many occasion, shout across a busy street about) my hair as long as i can remember. Add to this list, every single brilliant point @ddeabreu mentions in her latest post who i just found by coincidence! Solidarity 💞
…I’m never not surprised how many people also experience these tiresome macro + microaggressions.
I went “natural” in 1999. But it’s truly been a lifetime journey of learning to decolonise this mind and body + love this mane. It’s a topic i’ve been fascinated about, exchanged stories about, written about (and been part of a play about) - our hair stories! 💆🏽♀️
I’ve had so many experiences with people (friends, coworkers + strangers) mocking, ridiculing, laughing sticking fingers in, fetishising, gawping and talking about my hair. It’s often the first thing people associate with me - oh you know Dionne, the one with big hair. Which is mad. cause. you know. its weird. 😒 anyway. 🤷🏽♀️
You can imagine, I have been anticipating this book for a long time.
This goes straight into The Other Bookclub (check my ig book club 📚 highlights or more!)
And yesterday, joy and nourishment on so many levels…(see my stories for more on my Artists Date!) Getting to see Emma Dabiri and Ayishat Akanbi in conversation at Waterstones Gower Street about the politics of Black hair in a room filled with so many good people was…life!!! (click and swipe for a mini surprise on my ig!✨)
I’m so grateful.
📚Who else is reading this book?📚
🗣 So much on this topic i’d love to dive into and discuss here, so welcoming us all to explore our relationship with Black hair, the ideas we have about it, perhaps internalised oppression we carry, or beliefs we uphold. More to chew on, but feel welcome to add your chews below!
💡Sidenote, also talking about this book in my Inspiration Station on the new episode (36) of my podcast, I Feel For You (which just dropped!) Why am I so shy? My 28 year journey as a polymath 🐸
ALSO think this needs a podcast episode of it’s own, so do get in touch if you’re interested in being a part of it. 📮
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