This Video Challenges You to "Get it Back"
Throw off the constraints of western culture and embrace the richness of African tradition.
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Everyday we scour the continent for the latest in music and culture from African artists. And while style and innovation are in abundance, African creators are often overshadowed by their western counterparts. European language, culture and beauty still dominates African life both on the continent and abroad. Despite our rich traditions, African cultures are seen as second rate, something to be shed in favor of those of the west. With globalisation and international media intent on erasing what makes a place unique, it's up to us to stand up for what's ours.
In this powerful and poetic new video, a young man painted in western flags stands resolute but burdened looking down on his city until he falls, plunging into a deep pool of water representing a rebirth into African consciousness. Suddenly we see him as a young man, running through an unfinished building. Images of African pride set distinctly in a raw urban geography flash through his mind's eye. It tells the viewer that to be African and a city dweller is not a contradiction but something to be celebrated and cherished. This, too, is Africa.
Africanness it says, does not end at tradition but extends to our innovations, dreams and discoveries. To be a contemporary African means to embody all things: history and future, urban and rural, work and leisure. Our man, once suffering under the layers of eurocentric paint emerges cleansed from the water moments before sunrise, finally free—ready for the new day. This is how to "get it back" we're told. To radically reinvent. To cleanse. To know one's self.
How do you interpret the stories from this video and how have they inspired you to find your Africanness or, "to get it back." Tell us what are you doing to champion your African culture on social media with the hashtag #GetItBack?