News Brief

This New Doll With Albinism Shows Children That All Shades of Black Are Beautiful

In celebration of Albino Awareness Month in South Africa, meet doll collection Malaville's newest doll with albinism, Alexa.

September is Albino Awareness Month in South Africa, and doll maker Mala Bryan is harnessing the power of dolls to to address the persecution of people with albinism.

Beyond the now famous “doll test” which used dolls to prove a cultural bias toward to lighter skin, dolls are being used in a new way to help people move toward a more inclusive worldview.

Alexa, Bryan's newest doll, rocks a blonde TWA (teeny weeny afro), true to the hair color of people with albinism.

Albinism is a genetic condition which causes a “lack of pigment that normally would give a certain color to the skin, hair, and eyes.

Bryan started her collection of black and brown dolls, called Malaville, in 2015, with the goal of “inspiring creative imagination.” Her dolls’ complexions range from the honey sun kissed tone all the way to the rich midnight complexion made popular by model, Nyakim Gatwech, nicknamed Queen of the Dark.  

"There is so much that is going on in the world when it comes to people with albinism and it is now time for those who don’t know to get to know,” Bryan says in an interview with Huffington Post.

Even though people with albinism are only different in the way of appearance, they have been victimized by numerous abuses across the continent. Last year, a teenager in South Africa, was convicted of murdering his albino girlfriend in order to sell her body parts. The case came to light after her body was found in a shallow grave.

Alexa will hopefully be used to help garner compassion for people with albinism, proving once and for all that black is beautiful in all shades.

Interview
Photo: Kelenna Ogboso.

These Women Are Breaking Boundaries In Nigeria's Creative Spaces

We speak to five women about their work and contributions to Nigerian society & creative spaces, despite their patriarchal nature.

"African women in general need to know that it's ok for them to be the way they are–to see the way they are as a strength, and to be liberated from fear and from silence" —Wangarĩ Muta Maathai

These words prompt one to think about how terrible a job the media does in sharing the stories of African women. As journalists, our work is based on telling African stories, and the gap of female stories is a very apparent one that needs filling. It's important to have an environment that appreciates fearless and unapologetic women chasing their dreams and breaking the boundaries before them.

We caught up with Toketemu Ohwovoriole, a multimedia storyteller & journalist; Solis, a singer, songwriter, poet, & muse; Lauretta Yemoja, a beauty artist and rapper/singer; Tiwa Pearl, a dancer and creative; and Oyinkansola Dada, an art curator and founder of art gallery Polartics, to talk about their careers.

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