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Poet Lebo Mashile Speaks About The Racism That She Has Encountered

Poet Lebo Mashile Speaks About The Racism That She Has Encountered. Black Twitter was in outrage due to the tweets by Oneida Cooper and Bianca Schoombee.

Black Twitter was in outrage due to the tweets by Oneida Cooper and Bianca Schoombee. Lebo Mashile commented on the old tweets that were shared. The artist went on alongside other social media users to speak about the painful incidents that they have encountered where the colour of their skin was racially used against them.

“These conversations are so triggering. I remember when I rejoined my family in the US [as] a small kid. I couldn’t speak English & I was the only black kid at my school at that time. School was a place of daily isolation & bullying. I had only two friends, an Indian girl & a Latina,” says Lebo Mashile. The poet recalled how much subtle racism that she had to listen to. “Everytime we learnt about black history, it was an opportunity for white children and teachers to show their true colours. Challenging stereotypes or what was written in the schoolbooks made teachers hate me,” says Lebo Mashile.

She also spoke about an incident that occurred at her time in university. “We were discussing the SA rape pandemic in my international relations class at Wits (1st year). I got into a heated debate with a white woman tutor who stated that ‘rape was because black men do not know how to deal with empowered women” as if white men don’t rape women,” says Lebo Mashile. She also replied to a comment saying that the subtle racism also coloured the way lecturers were treated. “Black lecturers were overtly undermined even by black students. Brainwashing is real,” says the poet.

by Alexandra Ramaite

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