interesting conversation about the recent science-fiction film, District 9, can be found at Nnedi's blog here.
Just saw the movie last night and was horrified at its depiction of Nigerians, to say the least. Yes, I am used to slandering of the Nigerian brand and usually, I try to not let it bother me. However, after the horrific events that took place in South Africa in May of last year, I could not stomach the positive reviews of District 9. Last year, South Africa declared war on its immigrants, particularly Nigerians, who were deemed as the culprit for the plight of black South Africans (apparently, apartheid can take a back seat on this one....). During the month of May we were bombarded with images of the slaughter, burning, destruction of our fellow Nigerians and other Africans caught in the mayhem. District 9, for me, only served to legitimize such violence against the savage Nigerians, since in the words of the director, the tiny fraction of Nigerians living in South Africa, are indeed responsible for the MAJORITY of crime in a country that has been touted to have one of the highest homicide rates in the world...
Unfortunately, as one commenter posted on her blog, it is relatively easy to take shots at Nigerians seeing that we would not be able to come up with a concerted rebuttal or make a dent in their pockets. Previously, I have taken the Nigerian re-branding project lightly; however, scenarios such as what I have described seem to necessitate a serious look at the dangers, the baggage inherent in the mere mention of the words Nigeria, Nigerian. Rather than waste time on useless logos and mantras of "Good People, Great Nation" (or whatever they are using these days), efforts should go towards countering such portrayals of our people at home and abroad.
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