Hollywood Stereotypes: African Men
- Mama Hope
As part of their new campaign called "Stop the Pity, Unlock the Potential", the organization Mama Hope has published this hilarious video poking fun at the Hollywood clichés about men in Africa. Think of any recent action movie and you will realize that frequently, African men are depicted as ultra violent warlords leading armies of children shooting AK-47 from trucks. Hopefully, few people arrive at that conception, but a funny video is always a good way to remind people of the reality.
We really like the global vision of Mama Hope, and especially the message of this campaign: "It is only when people are no longer seen through the stereotypes of poverty that we can begin to see we are not so different from each other. We wanted our supporters to see that Africa is full of progress, potential, and hope.". We believe that this is a fantastic way to raise awareness about the amazing potential of Africa. Curing the symptoms of poverty is necessary, but the best way to help Africa is to provide the resources for people to "transform their own communities".
This reminds me of a fantastic story we read a few years ago on Wired: "Teen’s DIY Energy Hacking Gives African Village New Hope". Which was followed by quite a few interesting documentaries on TV about the growing DYI cultures in Africa and the amazing electronical and mechanical talents that young people have developed there out of necessity.
Ben often says that "Africa is the future", and we are profoundly determined to contribute to this movement, to make the world more fair and share the resources. It's a fact that Westerners will have to change their way of consuming food, energy, and goods in order to be more sustainable. We are seeing the rise of the 'maker movement', as Al-Jazeera recently reported. The DIY culture is more popular than ever on the net, and hackerspaces are opening all around the world. This is a unique opportunity to make it up to Africa after looting their resources for our own industrial revolution, and we need to back this new ambition. The entire world will benefit from it.