Honey, which means that your life will be sweet. Palm oil, to lubricate life’s aches. Salt, to protect and help keep you. Kola nut, i can not keep in mind precisely, it is it perhaps maybe not sufficient that it’s the absolute most symbolically Nigerian thing, across all lines that are ethnic?
What exactly are these? Collectively, they form element of a “bride cost” – money and gift suggestions provided by a person’s household to a female’s upon their wedding. At school in Nigeria, during Yoruba history course, we had been told about ladies who attracted extremely high bride rates, influenced by their characteristics. Inversely, there have been ladies whoever bride rates had been therefore paltry, it had been an embarrassment. I do not keep in mind the certain gift ideas and whatever they signify any longer, but I really do understand that these classes for which we had been taught about our history had been, for contemporary budding feminists, a difficult pill to swallow.
I will be considering bride price again this week, however, due to an app that is new’s been doing the rounds when you look at the African corners of my internet life. Initially, I became reluctant to create about that application after all. The narrative of Africa and Africans in the united kingdom as well as other Western, mostly white areas can be so old, therefore outdated and false, so wearying, that we conserve African stories for my safer areas, places where there’s no empathy space. I like speaking about Nigeria without some internet complete complete stranger telling us to “simply get over it!” Speaing frankly about Africa – its good and its own bad – regarding the internet wears me down. When we third-culture kids meet up, occupying that center room into the Venn diagram that overlaps our moms and dads’ countries aided by the West’s, we are able to laugh about any of it. That is what this software is all about.
Sharing the story that is full not only the news
The Bride Price app calculated that I happened to be well well worth the “Premium Babe”-ly amount of 494,500 naira that is nigerianNGN) –about ?1,816. Exactly exactly How achieved it get to this figure? Via a number of concerns, and are the star that is real of application. You’ve got the choice to always check “for yourself” or “for the friend/enemy” – because as Nigerians, a very important factor we have been constantly conscious of, even though we can not see or hear them, is our enemy.
Therefore, also I was smiling before I clicked. Then arrived the real concerns: my height; my fat (choices included the very”medium” that is standard and the harder-to-decipher “Mama Ronke” – so what does that even mean?); my leg form (“straight”, “sexy bow leg (Beyonce)” etc); my facial beauty (from “intimidating” to “complete no try”) an such like. Each response possesses value that is monetary no kola pea nuts here – often a “discount”, 60 % if you should be regrettable sufficient to function as the indecipherable “Mama Ronke”. The application does take time to determine the bride cost and provides a jaunty message by having a blinking green shekere (a West African guitar): “Please wait – the elders are consulting. at the conclusion of the test”
The expression “if that you do not laugh, you are going to cry” appears, as part of your, to be manufactured specifically for Nigerians. The accepted narrative is certainly one of woe, a country lurching from pillar (of calamity) to publish (of disaster) despite a resource wide range that may effortlessly end up being the naughty german brides reply to our issues. The idea of bride pricing is a screen to the past, a past which can be not at all times glorious or edifying whenever seen through a contemporary lens.
But this software is sly – the nuance is almost certainly not visually noticeable to all optical eyes, but it is here. Under skin colour – which could or might not have had a direct effect on bride cost when you look at the days that are olden truly things within the hierarchy of beauty today – comes five groups. “Half caste”; “Light epidermis”; “Dark”; “Whitenicious”; and “Lupita” (like in Nyong’o). The worthiness for every decreases as you get along record, beginning with +NGN50,000. Issue – and solution options simultaneously acknowledge the colour-struck manner attribute of a swathe of Nigerians, in addition to noting without fuss the number of tints we appear in obviously. There clearly was an level associated with Lupita skin, which will be a thing that is small although not.
There are more markers. On teeth, a “white with gap” has got the value that is highest (my mom has expressed dismay that none of her kiddies inherited our grandmother’s “beautiful” diastema), while “Ronaldinho” is sold with a -NGN40,000 label. The positioning and citizenship concerns are fine “don’t cry – laugh” examples (America is released tops in both), and a Masters is desirable, however a PhD features a penalty of -NGN100,000. Employment views gas and oil show up trumps (+NGN100,000); my journalism profession includes a value of only +NGN20,000. Fortunately, i will be “redeemed” by my English accent – the best – respected at +NGN45,000.
Then maybe it’s not for you if you can’t see the social commentary in this app.
Anyway. The software proposed my prospective in-laws deliver 100 yards of cable lace to my family that is ancestral homestead befitting my “Premium Babe” status. Finally, an software that gets me…