The issue of melanin

Great piece & a matter worth further interrogation. Our team is currently running a series on Zim Identities and one of our contributors will share his views as a white Zimbabwean.

Writing Hope

Being white and being Zimbabwean was problematic when I left home to go to university. Every child accepts their reality as normal and ordinary and so it came as quite a surprise when people who I met in the UK asked me ridiculous things like “your English is so good, how did you learn it?”, “so do you live in (long pause) houses?!” and of course, insultingly, “you can’t possibly be Zimbabwean, you’re white” (perhaps they thought we didn’t have mirrors in Zimbabwe?)

Perhaps, understandably, you are wondering how I could possibly grow up being racially unaware in a country like Zimbabwe where there is still so much suspicion and hatred between the races. Simply, I was blessed with a liberal family, a racially diverse church and a school where the only thing that mattered was your loyalty to the school itself. I was taught to be racially unaware. The…

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