Oyinbo: Is the usage of this term racially insensitive?

0
64

 

The word “oyinbo” is currently used more as a term of mockery and condescension than it is for any other purpose.

Oyinbo: Is the usage of this term racially insensitive?
Source: istockphoto.com

Oyinbo: Is the usage of this term racially insensitive?: I was just recently forwarded a link to a piece of writing that was penned by a Dutch woman who currently resides in Surulere.

The piece, which was written by Femke van Zeijl, opened my eyes to the fact that the majority of Nigerians are racist or at the very least racially insensitive. In her article, Femke van Zeijl discusses her time spent living in Lagos, Nigeria, as well as the Nigerians’ habit of shouting “oyinbo” at her in public.

The way in which we Nigerians make use of the word “oyinbo” was brought to my attention by this. “oyinbo” comes from a Yoruba word that originally referred to persons of European descent. Although the exact meaning of oyinbo is not offensive, its use in certain contexts may give the impression that it is racist.

The majority of the time, this word is used to make fun of white people, who are stereotyped as being peculiar, humorous, and feeble in these areas. In today’s climate, one would consider that to be a racial epithet. Imagine this: a white police officer yells at an African-American guy and names him a “negro” six times before throwinghis body down onto the pavement. You might be inclined to raise your eyes at this assertion; but, image this instead.

The word “negro” is being used in a derogatory manner in this context. Additionally, this is true for the word oyinbo. Nine times out of ten, it is utilized as a mockery of white people in this country, whom we consider to be physically inferior to us. This one word is not the end of the discussion.

READ ALSO:   Functions of academic library

These days, there are a lot of words that make my ears grate, and oyinbo is only one of them. There are various terminologies that we use. The word “half-caste” has got to be the most irritating one. A person who is of two different races is referred to using this term by those who speak the Nigerian language. For instance, media star Eku Edewor is of mixed race as a result of the fact that her British father and Nigerian mother gave birth to her. People like Edewor are referred to as half-castes in these parts of the world.

Oyinbo: Is the usage of this term racially insensitive?
Source: istockphoto.com

The difficulty with the phrase “half-caste” is that, in certain regions of the world, it can be seen as insensitive and offensive. Because someone has a background in more than one race does not make them half of anything. The same may be said for the term mulatto, which some of us use to refer to people of mixed racial heritage. The term “mulatto” comes from the word “mule,” which was formerly used to refer to the offspring of a donkey or horse.

Chinko and akata are two other examples of racially offensive words that are common in Nigerian speech. A person of Asian descent is referred to as a chinko, while African-Americans are referred to as akata. Although both of these words have benign roots, they are now almost exclusively used in a pejorative context. These phrases are not just out of date but also politically inappropriate and insensitive to racial issues.

There was a period when it was permissible to use the word “colored,” but that time has passed and it is no longer appropriate. Since the rest of the world is heading toward a more racially sensitive future, it is important that Nigerians do the same.

READ ALSO:   UPTH Post-Basic Nursing Form 2020/2021 Academic Session

oyinbo, oyinbo meaning, oyinbos, what does oyinbo mean, what does half cast mean,
oyibo nigeria

oyinbo, oyinbo meaning, oyinbos, what does oyinbo mean, what does half cast mean, oyibo nigeria