Africa and Stereotypes
Africa Is Not Starving
There are hungry people in Africa. There are homeless people in America. But we don’t associate America with homelessness simply because “some” of the people are homeless. Although there are hungry people in Africa, not everybody in Africa is hungry.
Africa is the continent that has been the target of an unfathomable amount of stereotyping, which has led to the widespread belief of false information through generalization. These generalizations act as a way to justify placements in society and they are sometimes helpful, but stereotypes on the other hand are dangerous.
It is these stereotypes that cause people to ask Africans whether they grew up wearing shoes or whether they’ve fought lions. These myths about Africa that people throughout the world believe to be true are beliefs that are deeply rooted in misinformation, lack of knowledge, and sometimes sheer ignorance.
Most African kids don’t have the privilege of smartphones, tablets, and laptops. What they have is open fields to run and play, dirt and mud to have a great time in the outdoors — hence the dirty African kid photos you see in the news. And the feet on the ground is a grounding technique not the lack of shoes.
Myth 1. Africa is a country. Africa isn’t a country and the people don’t speak African language. Africa is vast and the second largest continent in the world. It is a rich and diverse place encompassing more than 1,500 languages.
Myth 2. Africa is behind the rest of the world when it comes to education and technology. The truth is that “some’’ African countries lack access to education and resources, but they make the most of what they have. If the children don’t have a school building and must go to school under a mango tree, they do so to get the education they need. They don’t use the absence of school buildings as an excuse to not go to school. One way…