When I was a kid back in Brooklyn, younger even than Terrence, my friends would tease me. “Are you African?” They’d ask. “Hell no!” “So why the hell do you dress like that???” Yes, indeed, evidence to the contrary. I was decked out in a dashiki and a kufi everyday. My friends in Public School wore […]
Archive | Are you African?
“So, why do you know Swahili?” one of my more inquisitive students inquired. “I studied it in elementary school…” I replied. “I had to study it, the way you have to study English.” There were still looks of confusion on the students’ faces. The Japanese teacher looked as if it weren’t sitting well with her idea of how […]
The other day in class, the Japanese English teacher asked me what languages could I speak. The simplest answer would have been English only. I mean, as far as fluency is concerned it is the only language I know. However, from grades 1 through 8, I was heavily exposed to Swahili (an African language spoken in Kenya, Tanzania and other East […]