Translate

Sunday, December 8, 2019

Ghcurls' Vlog -"Being Black in Italy| My Experience" (with selected comments from that vlog's discussion thread)

Edited by Azizi Powell

This is Part II of a two part pancocojams series that showcases the YouTube vlog [video blog] by Ghcurls entitled "Being Black in Italy| My Experience".

Part II presents that vlog along with selected comments from that vlog.

Click https://pancocojams.blogspot.com/2019/12/youtube-video-partial-transcription-of.html for Part I of this post presents that vlog and presents my partial, unofficial transcription of this vlog episode with a focus on the numbered points that Ghcurls made.

The content of this post is presented for socio-cultural purposes.

All copyrights remain with their owner.

Thanks to Ghcurls for this vlog. Thanks also to all those who are quoted in this post.
-snip-
Click https://pancocojams.blogspot.com/2019/12/2017-article-excerpt-leaning-away-from.html for a closely related pancocojams post entitled "2017 Article Excerpt - "Leaning Away From Racial Evaporations in Italy- Reflections on Whiteness, African Americanness and Privilege in Italy" by Candice Whitney"

****
SHOWCASE VIDEO: Being Black in Italy| My Experience



Ghcurls, Jan 31, 2018

Hello guys i thought i should do a little talk video and so here you are. These are just some general things you might face as a black person living in Italy. It actually varies. In some cities you might even go unnoticed and in others you will just be one of the many black people.

If you want me to do more of such videos comment in the comment section and i will be glad to make such videos for you

#beingblackinitaly #livinginitalyasablackperson
-snip-
"Ghcurls" is a woman who was born in Ghana, West Africa. From a comment she made in this vlog, she came to Italy when she was in high school.

****
SELECTED COMMENTS FROM THIS VIDEO'S DISCUSSION THREAD
WARNING: This discussion thread contains a great deal of profanity. There's also at least one comment with the pejorative "n" word. None of those comments are given below except with partial spelling.

I also didn't include any comments in this compilation that discuss Italian politics in detail and didn't include any of the few comments that were written in Italian.

I assigned numbers to these comments for referencing purposes only.

1. David Black, 2018
"Interesting video. I spent a lot of time in Veneto, too. It's strange that they think you're American. Italians would assume that I'm not American (I am) but instead from Cuba, Brazil, or Morocco. And when I'd say I'm American, they'd ask me where I originally came from. Talk about stupid!"

**
REPLY
2. BPTB1, 2018
"David Black There's nothing more racist in this planet than fascist Italians."

**
3. Gisele Marcelle Findjeu, 2018
"I totally agreed with you my dear, all you said was true. Living in Milan working in office and have a good background i am so proud to tell them I'M AFRICAN, not french or american"

**
4. Priscilla Owusu Pankyee, 2018
"It is very true that there are people who would ask you very stupid questions. One white 19 year old Italian girl asked my 60 year old uncle if he stole the car that he drives.I was asked if in Africa we have food to eat and if we even have flat screen TVs.I mean how stupid is that?"

**
5. Sir Ace, 2018
"I'm sorry for your experience, though some of your remarks are totally typical of countries that never faced or only recently faced immigration from far countries.
As examples, the silly questions are obvious. I've been living in East Asia and they were sometimes asking me if Italy was one of USA states. Or if all Italians ate only pasta, they were called Mario or they were all Mafia affiliates. I couldn't find deodorant for my skin or products for my hairs. It's part of being an ethnic minority in a far foreign country. I was stared everywhere I went and sometimes insulted when I was dating local girls.
I personally accepted all that stuff as part of my choice in living in such a far foreign country. I can't blame the locals for that.
Add that racism in Italy towards Africans and South East Asians is as recent as the immigration from those areas. And actually it is really recent. Less than 30 years. And 30 years are nothing in terms of social acceptance and integration of diversity."

**
REPLY
6. Marley Barley, 2018
"Sir Ace I think it depends on the number of immigrants and their level of integration. The more the immigrants from x ethnic background (and lack of integration from them) the more they’re targeted for racism.
Albanians + Romanians are the largest ethnic minorities in Italy and as a result they face a lot of racism (also because many of them are criminals) this was also true for Moroccans several years ago as they were the largest ethnic minority.
Recently Bangladeshis have migrated to Italy but because their numbers are relatively small in comparison to others (b/w 100,000-150,000) and many own local grocery shops and aren’t as criminal they don’t face much racism (now if there were 1 million Bangladeshis in Italy they would face a lot more racism)."

**
REPLY
7. Sir Ace, 2018
"Well, what you write it's true but it's a secondary effect. For example, Philippinos have been the largest (or second largest) community of immigrants in Italy for three decades and still now are the fourth largest group. They never faced though much racism if any.
Chinese face some racism where there are the largest and most complex communities like in Prato but overall they are doing fine (more or less).
Albanians today are mostly integrated, I worked with a lot of them and they confirm me that basically racism against them has mostly come to an end.
The point is that most of Albanians worked hard to integrate, despite a big number of them that indulged in criminal activities. For Romanians there is a similar process going on and I think in less than 10 years you would not tell a Romanian from an Italian.
The problem for South Sahara people is that they are visible and recognizible, so the racist ones in Italy have an easy target. Add that some very violent crimes in the last years have been committed by South Sahara illegal immigrants and were widely reported in the media.
Still, I'm quite sure that in short time (maybe 30 years) we will not debate about this issue because it will be solved, since hopefully the African immigrants will try hard to integrate (as the Albanians did) and at the same time the locals will be more accustomed to variety."

**
8. Mamadou Lama Diallo, 2018
"Is true my dear"

**
9. Priscilla Owusu Pankyee, 2018
"It's not a comfortable country to live in as a foreigner. As much as there are many racists there I've met a lot of good people who treat me with a lot of respect but seriously I don't feel comfortable."

**
REPLY
10. 1FDerek, 2018
"Priscilla Owusu Pankyee It depends if you're a black or white foreigner cause Italians give a lot of importance to skin color. If you're a black foreign they will treat you like sh&t*, if you're a white foreigner with blonde hair and blue eyes the Italians will kiss your ass."
-snip-
*This word is fully spelled out in this comment.

**
REPLY
11. Priscilla Owusu Pankyee, 2018
"+1FDerek soo true you're right if you're black or Asian they don't respect people"

**
REPLY
12. 1FDerek, 2018
"Priscilla Owusu Pankyee Italians aren't really that racist to Asians but they're racist as hell against blacks, they don't respect blacks at all."

**
13. MB-A, 2018
"Living in Pisa, and the staring is on another level. I hate it here and never go anywhere."

**
REPLY
14. Priscilla Owusu Pankyee, 2018
"exactly I don't even want to go out with my Italian friends because when you do people are going to stare at you with you with disgust or curiosity and they look at you the entire time until you leave the place."

**
15. la mulata linda Martinez, 2018
"I have lived in Rome for 10 years, my husband is Italian and my children are half Italian. I have never had anyone approach me as a prostitute. Maybe it is the fact that I am African American of Afro Puerto Rican descent. Sometimes I am thought to be Brazilian and people will speak Portuguese to me but I have never had a racist encounter in the 10 years I've lived in Italy. I do agree in the last few years the Fascist strain that is apart of Italy's DNA has shown its ugly head. The immigrants are treated horribly and it is a scary time with 5 Star and Lega coming into power. My kids are small and I hope this latest strain of Fascism is a blip and not the future. I'm sorry that your experience has been so painful. It hurts me to know that people can be so ignorant. I left America to get away from white racism and it seems that everywhere we are with Europeans racism shows its ugly face. My husband and his family are the Italy that I love, good people who love humanity. My father in law is a lawyer that helps immigrant families, get housing and find jobs. But I will agree there is a feeling here now that I didn't feel when I first came here. I haven't had anyone be racist with me yet but the mood is ominous. Good luck to you sister."

**
REPLY
16. Sahada Beloved, 2018
"+la mulata linda Martinez I had to ask sorry.but are you light skinned?."

**
REPLY
17. 1FDerek, 2018 [This is written in response to another comment]
"Gray The majority of you Italians are not racist? Yeah sure, that's why the racist fascist of the Northern League won the latest election in Italy and the Northern League leader Matteo Salvini is the most important and powerful politician in Italy right now."

**
REPLY
18. Marley Barley, 2018
"1FDerek What led to their election though? Ask yourself that and think wisely. Most Italians are not racist. Ten years ago many Italians were, but they’ve changed immensely within a decade. Italians have been rescuing hundreds and thousands of refugees weekly, if not daily, and welcoming them with open arms for ten *years*, so how are they racist? To me this shows how they’re welcoming towards all regardless of ethnicity + religion.

Unemployment for locals is high, their economy is a mess, the EU (more like Germany) enforced austerity on them, and enforced the euro currency on them (which is destructive for Southern Europe but beneficial for Germany), the mass immigration is too much and too overwhelming; Europe can’t accept the whole, half, quarter, or even one fifth of the population of Africa and the Middle East, these are reasons why neo-fascists and populists are in power. All of these problems need to be addressed."

**
REPLY
19. Right Says Ted, 2018
"Marley Barley Wrong, I'm Italian and I can confirm that most Italians are racist."

**
REPLY
20. 1FDerek, 2018
"Marley Barley Well, to be honest Italy has always been a quite racist country, it's not something that started recently: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Manifesto_of_Race

**
REPLY
21. Marley Barley, 2018
"1FDerek Not necessarily true, pale, blonde, blue eyed Romanians or east Europeans aren’t treated well."

**
REPLY
22. 1FDerek, 2018
"Marley Barley Romanians and other Eastern European immigrants are treated quite well in Italy, I met a lot of them when I was in Italy."

**
REPLY
23. Marley Barley, 2018
"1FDerek Not really, Romanians and Albanians have been heavily discriminated against"

**
REPLY
24. 1FDerek, 2018
"Marley Barley Not now, I met a lot of Romanians and Albanians when I was in Italy, many of them have good job and there are many Romanian and Albanian women who are married to Italian men. From what I saw in Italy Eastern European immigrants are treated much better than those blacks who are born and bred in Italy."

**
REPLY
25. Marley Barley, 2018
"1FDerek I think it’s because they’re - they being Albanians and Romanians - now starting to integrate, their people are known for committing a lot of crime when they first arrived.

I’ve heard western black people like American/Canadian/British/etc black people are treated better than born and bred Italian black people...but I know many who are in mixed relationships with Italian men (many have their own YouTube channels)."

**
REPLY
26. 1FDerek, 2018
"Marley Barley Well, let's say that black westerns from countries like America, England and Canada are quite rare in Italy and most of them are tourists, but it's true that those blacks who are born and bred in Italy are treated very bad. Italy reminded me of the south of the US during the Jim Crow laws era."

**
REPLY
27. Marley Barley, 2018
"1FDerek What the hell?! Surely it can’t be that bad, i think you’re exaggerating. What’s your ethnicity and what country are you from?

**
REPLY
28. 1FDerek, 2018
"Marley Barley I'm a black dude from US, I lived in Italy for a couple of years because of my job, I'm not exaggerating, I'm just telling what I saw with my own eyes."

**
REPLY
29. Marley Barley, 2018
"1FDerek I always knew it was tough being raised in Italy as a black person with African parents but I didn’t think it was Jim Crow level of unbearable."

**
REPLY
30. 1FDerek, 2018
"Marley Barley Yes, it's very bad. Blacks who were born and bred in Italy and who studied in Italy go through a lot of racism and discrimination, they're considered like third class citizens and they're excluded from the Italian society. It's very sad."

**
REPLY
31. Marley Barley, 2018
"1FDerek I’ve come across at least 5 (if not more) youtube channels of interracial Italian and black couples with their mixed children, none of them ever mentioned racism was a problem for both them or their mixed children. There’s some ignorance and curiosity but nothing like being a third class citizen. I’ve heard only good things from Bangladeshis living in Italy too.

I’m appalled by what I’m reading, can I ask you how they’re discriminated against? And in what way are they treated like third class citizens?"

**
REPLY
32. 1FDerek, 2018
"Marley Barley Well, you should know that since you're Italian and you live in Italy : )"

**
REPLY
33. Marley Barley, 2018
"1FDerek I’m mostly Irish with partial Bangladeshi heritage (i look white) raised in the uk and lived in the Netherlands for a while. Where did I say I’m Italian? I just read about Italian politics."

**
34. Arianna E, 2018
"italy is like the last place to go to escape racism if ur coming from america lmaoo"

**
REPLY
35. André K., 2018
"@Arianna E Exactly, maybe going to England or France or some other country, not to fascist land Italy, lmao."

**
36. Priscilla Owusu Pankyee, 2018
"The thing you said about stares in the beginning is soo true.I am a black girl born and raised in Italy and I can confirm that this is true.Some look at you as if they don't know that there is such a thing as the black race as if you are an alien.From the way you talked I can tell you are bitter towards Italy and that you don't like living there.Personally I don't feel comfortable in the country now I live in France and I feel more comfortable there because the racial integration is much better over there."

**
REPLY
37. Sir Ace, 2018
"Indeed. I hope for a future without racism in Italy and I also hope for a good integration of all the newer Italians. I do really hope that they'll feel Italians as soon as possible. On the other hand I'm not so ingenous to think it will be a short process. Italians don't really know how to behave with cultures they don't know. Second generation Italians need to be patient and help the more historic Italians to understand that in the end we will all be Italians. Maybe it will not happen tomorrow and still in France there is a lot of racism but I feel that in Italy there will be less cultural segregation. Even because in France the banlieu housing system only slowed down integration (as the many terrorist attacks from radicalized 2nd/3rd generation French, English and Belgians demonstrated). In Italy the immigrants live more side by side with Italians."

**
38. Teena W., 2018
"You are so wrong about the majority of what you're saying, I lived in Rome in Trastevere and did not experience any of this prostite stuff. And there are several black hair salons and beauty supply stores... There is one big black hair supply store by the termini station in Rome. Please don't speak for all black people because yes I'm Black American and I noticed the different of treatment but it's still depends on YOUR reaction to things on how your experiences will be. My experience living in Rome as a Business English Teacher was quite positive and sure I was asked where in America I was from and they would want to know more, it's ok because i know it is out of genuine interest. Of course if you're black in Italy we are gonna get looked at, because we are in Italy... Duh!😏"

**
REPLY
39. It's kris Btw, 2018
"Teena W. How is she wrong? Its her experience, and to be corrective here, you don't look like her, your skin is lighter, so of course you and her experiences are vastly different."

**
REPLY
40. Teena W., 2018
"It's kris Btw Well, Kris I know she's talking about her experience on how she was treated but when she said ALL Black people are thought of as prostitutes in Italy, That was wrong and when she said there were no hair products for Black people or hairnsalonss in Rome that was also wrong. I never challenged her opinion on how SHE was treated by Italians because of course I'm American and my experience will be different for sure. But she was wrong about the things I mentioned."

**
REPLY
41. 1FDerek, 2018
"It's kris Btw Exactly, the darker is your skin, the worst the Italians treat you. If you're pale, blonde and with blue eyes the Italians will kiss your ass."

**
42. ramarr0, 2018
"I noticed that black people coming from USA in general report a better experience in Italy than black people coming from African countries."

**
REPLY
43. HAT, 2019
"It is because Italians have a thing for Americans = NICE TREATMENT"

**
REPLY
44. BPTB1, 2019
"@HAT I can assure you that Italians are racist against black Americans too. It happened to me when I was in Italy and I'm a black American man from Brooklyn Heights."

**
45. Courtney Henley, 2018
"You have some seriously weird issues and this was both stupid and untrue! I lived in Italy for two years and no one - NO ONE - ever thought I was a prostitute or stared at me with disgust. This is something that YOU are putting out because I was adored by the Italians and never had any issue."

**
REPLY
46. Mercedes B, 2018
"Courtney Henley are you even black? From your pic you don’t look black"

**
REPLY
47. Tasha Mack, 2018
"Courtney Henley Are you fully black?"

**
REPLY
48. 1FDerek, 2018
"Courtney Henley The darker is your skin the worst the Italians will treat you. If you're pale, blonde and with blue eyes the Italians will kiss your ass."

**
REPLY
49. Ghcurls, 2018
"well you lived for 2 years. I have been here for long so i don't expect you to tell me i have weird issues. Talk to me when you stay here for 10 years"

**
REPLY
50. Sahada Beloved, 2018
"Courtney from your picture.you are light skinned right?. OK girl sit somewhere. never knock down someone's experience because you haven't experienced it. if you were to get on YouTube and talk about being sexually assaulted does that mean I have the right to condemn you because I haven't?. you are either trolling or just plain empathetic"

**
REPLY
51. Rho A, 2018
"Courtney Henley You're being hostile and You're not even truly black! No wonder you fled from the responses. You want us all to live vicariously through your light skin? 🤣 Get real."

**
REPLY
52. Caroline Obonyo, 2018
"Courtney Henley. Your skin is not black. U could easily pass for being white. Case closed. Amen."

**
REPLY
53. Malika Diza, 2019
"Courtney Henley I’ve been in Rome for a week and I’ve been stared at multiple times in disgust"

**
54. 1FDerek, 2019
"[names of three previous commenters] Italians are worldwide recognized as the worst and the most racist European colonizers in Africa."

**
REPLY
55. Salvatore Lanzieri, 2019
"1FDerick The problem is Italians dont trust most foreigners Period.. Not just subsahran poor negroes. Especially recently because there are so many subsahran africans. Nigerians especially have given africans a bad name ! they prostitue there own sisters,they sell hard drugs etc etc. The nigerians and most africans also come with no trades or skils ! So what will they do ? Just beg and get state money ? The fact is we look at you in this way ! And another thing ,older Italian men will not let there daughters date africans period. And thats why 99% you will not end up with them ."

**
REPLY
56. 1FDerek, 2019
"@Salvatore Lanzieri Salvatore Lanzeri You Italians have ALWAYS been very racist against blacks, it certainly didn't start today. Italians have a long history of racism against blacks."

**
REPLY
57. Salvatore Lanzieri, 2019
"Geeeze thats funny because before the 1990s there were only a few african migrants in cities . and before the 1950s there were none . so how were we always prejudice ??? during ww2 we were in north africa but that was war. So nice try ! But once again Derek your wrong . They have wifi in subsahra ? oh thats right your in America !! ahahaha!!!!"

**
REPLY
58. Marcel Tresvant, 2019
"@Salvatore Lanzieri What about the Italian fascist racial laws against black people? What about Benito Mussolini and the gassing of the Ethiopians? Nice try dude but everyone who went to school knows about it."

**
REPLY
59. Marcel Tresvant, 2019
"Salvatore Lanzieri War has nothing to do with that stupid idiot. The Italian fascist racial laws were made against those citizens of the Italian kingdom who were black, like people who lived in the Italian colonies of Africa. Idiot."

**
REPLY
60. FataLFreaKZz, 2019
"Marcel Tresvant Omg what a stupid person ... in 1940s black people didn’t have any right in all Europe... The racial laws made because of being an ally of Germany were against Jews, not Africans that especially France and English were enslaving"

**
REPLY
61. 1FDerek, 2019
"@FataLFreaKZz The Italian fascist racial laws were not only against Jews but also against those blacks who lived in the Italian colonies in Africa (Eritrea, Somalia, Ethiopia). They weren't made in 1940s but in the 1930s. It's not true that blacks in 1940 didn't have any right in Europe, racial laws were only in fascist Italy and in nazi Germany."

**
62. RW M, 2019
"Wish i had watched before i landed hahaha this is 100% true. The stares are giving me anxiety."

**
REPLY
63. The Renaissance Amazon, 2019
"RW M Damn. That’s making me not want to go."

**
REPLY
64. BPTB1, 2019
"@The Renaissance Amazon I'm a black American man and because of my job I lived in Italy for a period some years ago. Italy is freakin' SCARY if you're black. Lots of fascists and a lot of fascist racist graffiti in the Italian towns. It looks like still living in the world war 2 era. Most racist and scary place where I've been."

**
65. Ej khan, 2019
"Im a british born muslim i got married to an Italian Muslim. I spent most of my time in milan and the staring i got..omg... They made me feel as if I was an alien lol. They talk about u infront of you thinking u dont understand .. Look at you up and down... Not most people talk English so its hard to communicate .. Most of them are racist but not all.. I get you sister x gota say no country beats the humanity and right we all get in the uk."

**
66. Malika Diza, 2019
"I’ve been in Rome for a week and the people here are unfriendly, and they stare at you straight in the eyes and I got so annoyed with it that I just started saying hello 🤦🏾‍♀‍ but yeah most people just keep to themselves here and I figured if they wanna be racist then that’s their problem not mine...🤷🏾‍♀‍"

**
REPLY
67. alex ojideagu, 2019
"That's very strange for a major capital city, even in Italy they should be used to black people. Nobody stares in London or Paris just because you're black."

**
REPLY
68. 1FDerek, 2019
"@alex ojideagu Rome is a very particular case, cause it's a big city with a village mentality.
-snip-
This sub-thread included a comment exchange between Malika Diza and Ghcurls, the video producer, indicating that they would be in direct contact with each other in Rome."

****
This concludes Part II of this pancocojams series.

Thanks for visiting pancocojams.

Visitor comments are welcome.

YouTube Video & Partial Transcription Of Ghcurls' Vlog -"Being Black in Italy| My Experience"

Edited by Azizi Powell

This is Part I of a two part pancocojams series that showcases the YouTube vlog [video blog] by Ghcurls entitled "Being Black in Italy| My Experience".

Part I presents my partial, unofficial transcription of this vlog episode with a focus on the numbered points that Ghcurls made.

Click https://pancocojams.blogspot.com/2019/12/ghcurls-vlog-being-black-in-italy-my.html for Part II of this pancocojams series. Part II presents that vlog along with selected comments from that vlog.

The content of this post is presented for socio-cultural purposes.

All copyrights remain with their owner.

Thanks to Ghcurls for this vlog.
-snip-
Part II of this pancocojams series will be published ASAP and its link will be added to this post.

Click https://pancocojams.blogspot.com/2019/12/2017-article-excerpt-leaning-away-from.html for a closely related pancocojams post entitled "2017 Article Excerpt - "Leaning Away From Racial Evaporations in Italy- Reflections on Whiteness, African Americanness and Privilege in Italy" by Candice Whitney"

****
SHOWCASE VIDEO: Being Black in Italy| My Experience



Ghcurls, Jan 31, 2018

Hello guys i thought i should do a little talk video and so here you are. These are just some general things you might face as a black person living in Italy. It actually varies. In some cities you might even go unnoticed and in others you will just be one of the many black people.

If you want me to do more of such videos comment in the comment section and i will be glad to make such videos for you

#beingblackinitaly #livinginitalyasablackperson
-snip-
"Ghcurls" is a woman who was born in Ghana, West Africa. From a comment she made in this vlog, she came to Italy when she was in high school.

****
PARTIAL TRANSCRIPTION OF THIS VLOG
by Azizi Powell
[Additions and corrections are welcome.]

1...."one of the first thing to expect when you are Black in Italy is the stares. People are going to stare at you right left center. Wherever you go, whoever you are with- you are going to get the stares.

Now the stares are quite different. People are going to stare at you with curiosity. People are going to stare at you with disgust. People are going to stare at you with-like-in a sexual way. Whatever it is, you are going to get stares....

2. If you are Black in Italy, you have... I mean you probably are going to be regarded as a quote on quote regarded as a "prostitute". And that is automatic. Like, every Black person in Italy is supposed to be a prostitute. That is-that actually kinda of annoys me. It it it just kills my soul that I-because of the color of my skin I am going to be associated with a prostitute. Now when I was in the North, I never really got those kind of-It wasn't direct, you understand. In Rome [pause] it is terrible....

3. You are never going to get any products for you. When I say "any products" what I mean is you are never going to walk in a store and get something that is tailored for your hair, for your face, for your skin, for anything. There is- I mean it is assumed that we are in the minority, which we are, and apparently we don't need any makeup. Apparently, we don't take out our hair. Apparently, we don't exist. So basically you walk in any makeup store and their foundation range is going to stop at [pause] a mulatto's like um skin tone. You're never-it's never going to go down....

If you are coming from outside the country and you're thinking you are going to get everything here-I'm sorry. You're not. So just bring everything with you when you're coming to Italy. Face, makeup products, hair products-whatever it is you need, bring them with you because I can take you you are not going to get any of that.

4. Another thing to expect is being associated with a Black American. So the funny thing is if you are in Italy, and you dress well and you walk well and you speak well and you do whatever it is well- if you have a good appearance, you know, you know, you're not African. And that is terrible. I mean that is terribly painful because you can see me and say "Oh, you are- You don't look African. You look American." Ah, what does that mean? I don't understand. What makes me look like a Black American? What makes me not look like an African? Is it because we are always portrayed as as poor people or as something of that sort and so we are not worthy to be, to be able to dress well, to be able to speak well, to be able to be gentle like-Yeah there's something about this which actually irks me....Yeah, if you dress well, if you have an iphone, if you have whatever, you're an African American, or you're from the UK- somewhere but not in Africa.

5. Yes, another thing to expect if you are Black in Italy is to be asked a lot of questions. Ah, people do ask you lots of questions, and you say, okay, this is genuinely because they want to know, they genuinely want to know more about you, more about your culture, they want to know more about where you come from. And you're going to get questions that insult you and questions that are just, you you wonder if the person asking the question is actually a human being or if the person asking the question is, is educated in any kind of way. Now I don't blame them because that's what they see on tv. Africans are portrayed as having I don't know, flies on their nose, flies on their mouth, asking for aid, no water to drink, no clothes to wear. So you will be asked these silly questions. It baffles me and annoys me. I mean I have been asked if I see elephants and tigers when I open my door....And I said "Excuse me, I don't live in a jungle". Lately, I was asked a question like "Why do you have white teeth when you are black?" Like, that is one of those crazy questions that people ask you. And you're like "Are you even serious? I mean, are teeth supposed to be black because I'm Black? Like, are you even serious?" That is just one of the normal, the absurd questions that people ask you"...

****
This concludes Part I of this pancocojams series.

Thanks for visiting pancocojams.

Visitor comments are welcome.

2017 Article Excerpt - "Leaning Away From Racial Evaporations in Italy- Reflections on Whiteness, African Americanness and Privilege in Italy" by Candice Whitney

Edited by Azizi Powell

This pancocojams post presents an excerpt of an online 2017 article by Candice Whitney entitled "Leaning Away From Racial Evaporations in Italy- Reflections on Whiteness, African Americanness and Privilege in Italy" by Candice Whitney.

The content of this post is presented for socio-cultural purposes.

All copyrights remain with their owner.

Thanks to Candice Whitney for her research and her writing. I encourage pancocojams visitors to read this entire article.
-snip-
Note that the article excerpt that is given below doesn't include hyperlinks that are given within that article.

I happened upon Candice Whitney's 2017 article on this subject after surfing the internet looking for articles about being Black in Italy. I was motivated to read about that subject after reading this December 6, 2019 New York Times article: ‘Black Friday’ Headline Is Condemned by Stars of Italian Soccer" by Elisabetta Povoledo https://www.nytimes.com/2019/12/06/world/europe/black-friday-italy-soccer.html.

Also, click https://pancocojams.blogspot.com/2019/12/youtube-video-partial-transcription-of.html for Part I of this post presents that vlog and presents my partial, unofficial transcription of this vlog episode with a focus on the numbered points that Ghcurls made. The link to Part II (that vlog with selected comments) is given in Part I of that pancocojams series.

****
ARTICLE EXCERPT- "LEANING AWAY FROM RACIAL EVAPORATIONS IN ITALY - REFLECTIONS ON WHITENESS, AFRICAN AMERICANESS, AND PRIVILEGE IN ITALY"
by Candice Whitney, November 29, 2017 in Intersections, Non Fiction, The dreaming machine n 1
http://www.thedreamingmachine.com/leaning-away-from-racial-evaporations-in-italy-candice-whitney/
..."Why talk about privilege?

Privilege can be defined as “a set of unearned benefits given to people who fit into a specific social group”. In 1988, “White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack” by Senior Research Associate of the Wellesly Center for Women launched contemporary academic and everyday discussions about whiteness and unearned benefits in the United States.

[...]

Race in Italy has a complicated history, which has impacted present-day realities of privileging certain types of people as eligible to be considered Italian and reproduce Italy....

What do I mean by white Italians?

I think that privilege in Italy doesn’t necessarily require you to racially identify yourself, but rather be aware of how others are meant to feel excluded from belonging to Italy so that your identity can remain included within the notion and imaginary of Italy. When I say white Italians, I refer to people who have had not to put out emotional labor to combat prejudicial stereotypes of folks who look like them or share other commonalities in the media. Throughout the country’s history, whiteness hasn’t been explicitly referred to, whereas darkness, in regard to Southern Italians and Africans, has been made more clear through colonization and fascist propaganda. Sadly this legacy of fascist advertising can be linked to the Forza Nuova propaganda of illustrating black migrants as rapists.

My privileges

At this point in my reflection, I feel it necessary to share how I struggle even with the language available to discuss unearned social benefits. I struggle with the term privilege, as I feel it brings forth once again the hegemony of racial dynamics in the United States. Scholar Sandra Ponzanesi argues that postcolonial literature often gets expressed in English, which marginalizes other languages such as Italian Recalling the questions of anthropologist Tina Campt in her article “The Crowded Space of Diaspora: Intercultural Address and the Tensions of Diaspora Relation”, what are the ways in which these referrals to English terminally asymmetrically allow and limit people to authentically speak about their own experience? For this reason, I have decided to use comodità quotidiana, as I feel that this type of compound term recalls bringing one out of their comfort zone and encouraging a reflection as to how this comfort is merely a daily convenience limited to few and potentially a regular frustration and annoyance to others.

My self-reflective analysis is primarily rooted in my own readings in the field of Black European Studies, as these readings have provided a framework to help me complicate my own understanding and tease out further questions about being black and Italian, being AfroItalian, and being a black African American in Italy. Campt’s notion of the “intercultural address”, or the ways that we see the commonalities and similarities between African American and Black European experiences through references to the hegemonic black American cultural capital across the globe. She describes it as “a series of eruptions/interruptions that I encountered repeatedly in the process of interviewing where, as an African American, I often became the object of address, being directly and indirectly spoken or referred to—at times even becoming the topic of our conversation itself—by my Afro-German interview partners in their attempts to describe and explain their experiences as black people in German society”. In my conversations with AfroItalians for example, referrals to movements and strides by African Americans, as well as contemporary struggles, were commonplace to discuss being AfroItalian and blackness in Italy. How might my African American identity represent forms of hegemony that I benefit from while living in Italy? Combining the feminist praxis of the intercultural address and white privilege will inform my understandings of my own privileges and experiences in Italy.

1. ”Ahhh! Sei Americana!”: Nationality and Cultural Belonging

When I arrived to Taranto with my fro and luggage in tow ready for New Years Day 2014, I was excited to have finally celebrate the beginning of the year in a Southern city. While waiting for the bus to Montalbano, I had asked a man nearby, who also appeared to be waiting, if he knew when the bus would arrive. Our conversation then leads to introductions, him Calabrian, and me American. “Ahh! Sei americana!” he responds upon learning about my nationality And the conversation then begins to talk about Malcolm X, Angela Davis, and other Black Panthers and their role in Black Liberation Movement. He’s not the only person I have met who looked at me in interest and appreciation, ready to discuss aspects of African American history and culture. What’s striking to me is that it’s so easy to feel looked over as invaluable in the United States, hence the movement Black Lives Matters, whereas abroad people are knowledgeable of African American political movements and want to discuss them. Even though the recognizing dichotomy can be a bit jarring, the hegemony of African American social capital presents new opportunities to discuss your history. But at the expense of who?

When I’ve gone out with AfroItalian friends, people have found learning about my background more appealing than those of my friends. In her recent interview with The Black Expats, Johanne Affricot clearly articulates the dominance of African American cultural capital, as Italians are more interested in other forms of blackness abroad such as African Americans, but demonstrate little desire to understand the struggles of black Italians in their own country. This form of dominance makes it easy to perhaps not even engage in the struggles of AfroItalians and other children of immigrants, let alone try to understand their struggles in an American framework.

2. Christian privilege

Even though I’m baptized as Presbyterian, a form of Protestantism, compared to the Catholic majority in Italy, there’s still a privilege of moving to the country as a Christian. Of course, there are many different religions that exist and thrive in Italy. Perhaps the difference between identifying as a Christian, or simply having grown up in a Christian family, to those of other religions in Italy, is simply the nonexistent expectation to have to explain anything about my faith. This expectation is irregardless of how much or little I may practice my faith. The most I expect to clarify is that Presbyterianism is a form of Protestantism, compared to perhaps explaining why some women wear the hijab. Marwa Mahmoud shares about the constant expected emotional labor she must put forth to explain herself as a hijabi woman living in Italy.

3. Financial privilege

I have the funds to come to Italy as a student, as well as the desired yet unearned skills and tools to make money. English as my native language, coupled with my blue passport, makes it easy it for me to find paid opportunities related to teach the language or babysit in English.

4. Heterosexual cisgender

To put it simply, I fit within the hegemonic gender binary that exists in Italy, like in the United States and many countries across the globe. I don’t have to fight to defend my sexuality. However, that doesn’t mean that I don’t see how monumental the recognition of civil unions in Italy last May 2016. My gender and sexuality allow me to fit cookie cutter perfect into Italy if the opportunity presented itself and I wanted to. In a conversation with a student researcher from my alma mater, she shares that unfortunately in Italy, if one is gay or a single parent, then they are unable to create a family even through options such as IVF and adoption, and this greatly reinforced the ways imaginary and expectation of families in Italy consisting of a cisgender man and woman.

The two “comodità quotidiane” I have chosen to share are ones that I’ve found intersect with my own experiences as an African American in the US. Nonetheless, I find that highlighting these privileges or social advantages that people have to make their days just one step easier, one less thing to internalize or to ignore, is extremely powerful. They are necessary to begin recognizing how the personal is indeed political in Italy, and how ordinary racisms are shaped by history and contemporary bullsh&t*.
-snip-
[Pancocojams Editor: This word is fully spelled out in this comment.]

Everyday Conveniences

Citing my own privileges help tease out potential comodità quotidiana that white Italians may face. The previously listed comodità will usually follow me whenever I travel outside of the United States, thus not requiring the responsibility self-critically reflect on them and how they may intersect with dominant groups in my travel destinations. Since I’m not from Italy, it’s understandable that people want to learn more about my background but that doesn’t negate that my narrative belongs to the dominant exported narrative of African Americans.

I focus on examples that relate to the ways white Italians may not get their cultural belonging to Italy interrogated by the paeseani. The following statements speak more to levels of xenophobia rather than other forms of prejudice (sexism, homophobia, ableism). Recalling the format of McIntosh’s list from 1988, I also use the first person, as if from the point of view from a white Italian. The main difference here is that McIntosh is white and I am not. I decided to add additional context by citing examples published online that demonstrate that these are realities that affect new generation Italians.

I haven’t gotten told a variation of “ma come parli l’italiano cosi bene?”, an immediate invitation to interrogate my origins.

The sentence “ma come parli l’italiano cosi bene?” translates approximately to “but how do you speak Italian so well?” If you are an immigrant, a child of immigrants, or mixed, you probably know all too well this phrase or a variant. Hearing this phrase may even be exacerbated by your skin color, especially if you are of darker tone. In the fotoromanza Apprarenze created by Rete G2, the white Italian protagonist Adriano, assumes that the black woman protagonist Lucia doesn’t speak Italian and he attempts to speak to her in English, only to learn that she does speak the language. He tells her that she didn’t even appear Italian, even though she speaks Italian perfectly, prompting a response to explain that her parents moved to Italy 30 years ago and she was born and raised in the country. Even though she begins to explain her background, complimenting one’s Italian, especially when they appear to have an immigrant background, elicits the individual to explain their origins and prove that they are Italian like their white counterparts.

[...]

I don’t feel any pressure to claim, or resist, labels that refer (even incorrectly) to my skin color or profile my family’s geographical and/or cultural origins.

I find it odd that in a place that finds it easy to racially label people as black, Chinese, Filippina, Moroccan (in regard to the last three, when used to describe you it doesn’t matter which country your heritage is from) etc, there’s still uncomfortability in exploring or claiming what the “default” race is. Clearly, an Italian can come from any background as long as they have been born and/or grown up in Italy, however that does not negate the fact that people are ascribed racial markers which elicits various emotional responsibilities, such as claiming or resisting the labels and racial markers.

AfroItalian and Muslim Italian communities, in the words of researchers Annalisa Frisini and Camilla Hawthorne, have “re-politicised” these racial markers. In regard to hair politics and beauty aesthetics, Frisini and Hawthorne have argued that AfroItalian and Muslim Italian girls “re-politicise” afros and hijab as a forms of resistance against racialisation, and these gendered practices are linked to the women claiming belonging in Italy. On a similar note, the relatively new terms AfroItalian and Black Italian have produced new conversations about living in black and brown skin in Italy. Activist Ian Ssali rejects the label nero, as it is linked to stereotypes that fail define the diversity of African descendants, whereas writers Johanne Affricot, Celine Angbeletchy and Gaylor Mangumbu claim the title as means of both resisting anti-blackness and recognizing the commonalities of anti-blackness struggles across the diaspora.

Conclusion

I created this list as a starting point to create a discussion about the concept of privilege and how it might exist in Italy. As I mentioned earlier, this list of daily conveniences is inspired by my own experiences as a straight, able-bodied, African American woman. This list would only get significantly longer and more complex depending on sexual orientation, gender, ability, etcetera. Of course, there is when racism and xenophobic actions happen, call UNAR and report that mess and hopefully legal action will follow through. Lastly, I hope that reflecting on my own privileges as an African American abroad living in Italy can pull back some of the racial erasures in Italy, by citing experiences that white Italians may never have to anticipate or experience.

This piece was originally published in its Italian translation by Lorenzo Vanelli in La Macchina Sognante N. 8*
-snip-
*Given as a hyperlink http://www.lamacchinasognante.com/per-una-presa-di-distanze-dallevaporazione-razziale-in-italia-candice-whitney-trad-lorenzo-vanelli/
-snip-
Candice Whitney included this bio summary:
"I’m a Fulbright research alum’17, and during that period I conducted research on how the historical and political processes that shape Italy’s contemporary relationship with African countries impacts the promotion of products and business relations amongst African women entrepreneurs in Italy. Since receiving my Bachelors of Art in Anthropology and Italian cum laude from Mount Holyoke College in 2015, I have lived and worked in Morocco and Italy as a teacher and researcher. As an African American and a traveller, I’m curious to understand how self-identifying Black and African people perceive themselves, their surroundings, and their projects. When I’m not researching, I’m reading memoirs or essays, cooking up some chickpeas in a spicy sauce, or improving my rollerblading skills."

****
Thanks for visiting pancocojams.

Visitor comments are welcome.

Saturday, December 7, 2019

Donald Lawrence & The Tri-City Singers (feat. Le'Andria Johnson) - "Deliver Me (This Is My Exodus) information, lyrics, & video

Edited by Azizi Powell

This pancocojams post showcases a YouTube video of the Gospel song "Deliver Me (This Is My Exodus)" sung by Donald Lawrence & The Tri-City Singers (feat. Le'Andria Johnson).

Information about that song is included in this post along with the song's lyrics.

The content of this post is presented for religious, cultural, and aesthetic purposes.

All copyrights remain with their owners.

Thanks to the composers of this Gospel song and thanks to Donald Lawrence & The Tri-State Singers and Le'Andria Johnson for their musical legacy.

****
SHOWCASE VIDEO: Get Your Blessings from this Le’Andria Johnson ‘Sunday Best’ Performance



BETNetworks, Aug 13, 2019

#BET #SundaysBest #LeAndriaJohnson

Donald Lawrence & the Tri-City Singers featuring Le’Andria Johnson will forever change your being with this powerful performance of DELIVER ME (THIS IS MY EXODUS) from ‘Sunday Best: Acquire A Choir’. Make sure to catch more vocal greatness on ‘Sunday Best’ every Sunday on BET at 8/7c.




****
INFORMATION ABOUT THIS SONG
From https://www.thechristianbeat.org/index.php/gospel/6384-deliver-me-this-is-my-exodus-hits-1-at-gospel-airplay "Deliver Me (This Is My Exodus)" Hits #1 At Gospel Airplay
Thursday, 08 August 2019; Written by Jessie Clarks
" “Deliver Me (This Is My Exodus)” (featuring Le’Andria Johnson) from GRAMMY Award-winning icon and producer Donald Lawrence Presents The Tri-City Singers, hits #1 on the latest Billboard Gospel Airplay Chart. Just off the helm of a powerful performance on BET’s Sunday Best, Johnson joined Donald Lawrence and The Tri-City Singers on the stage, delivering her unforgettable vocal gifts that made her the Sunday Best season 3 winner, with Lawrence’s arrangement and poignant lyrics showcasing why he continues to remain one of Gospel music’s most prolific artists, music directors, songwriters, and producers.

Produced by Lawrence and co-written by Lawrence, Sir the Baptist, Marshon Lewis, Rob Woolridge Jr. and Desmond Davis, “Deliver Me (This Is My Exodus)” (feat. Le’Andria Johnson) is a declaration of faith to break away from past binds, and marks Lawrence’s fifth #1 single on Billboard’s Gospel Airplay Chart in his career, following his #1 hits “The Blessing of Abraham,” “Encourage Yourself,” “Back II Eden,” and “The Gift.” The chart-topping single is the third single released from Donald Lawrence Presents The Tri-City Singers celebratory album, GOSHEN. GOSHEN, a milestone anniversary reunion album hails 25 years since Lawrence and the Tri-City Singers released their acclaimed 1993 beloved debut album A Songwriter’s Point of View."

****
LYRICS: "DELIVER ME (THIS IS MY EXODUS)"
(Donald Lawrence, Sir the Baptist, Marshon Lewis, Rob Woolridge Jr. and Desmond Davis- composers)

He leads me beside still waters
He restoreth my soul
When you become a believer
Your spirit is made right
And sometimes, the soul doesn't get the notice
It has a hole in it
Due to things that's happened in the past
Hurt, abuse, molestation
But we wanna speak to you today and tell you
That God wants to heal the hole in your soul
Some people's actions is not because their spirit is wrong
But it's because the past has left a hole in their soul
May this wisdom help you get over your past
And remind you that God wants to heal the hole in your soul
I have my sister Le'Andria here
She's gonna help me share this wisdom
And tell this story

Lord
Deliver me
'Cause all I seem to do is hurt me
Hurt me
Lord
Deliver me
'Cause all I seem to do is hurt me
Yes sir
Hurt me, yeah, yeah
I know we should be finishing but
Sing it for me two more times

Lord
Deliver me
'Cause all I seem to do is hurt me
Ha-ha
Hurt me
One more time
Yeah
Lord
Oh
Deliver me
'Cause all I seem to do is hurt me, yeah
Hurt me, yeah
Whoa yeah

And my background said
(Whoa-whoa, Lord, deliver me)
Oh yeah
God rescued me from myself, from my overthinking
(Deliver me)
If you're listening out there
Just repeat after me if you're struggling with your past
And say it
(Oh, Lord oh)
Let the Lord know, just say it, oh
(Oh, Lord, Lord)
He wants to restore your soul
He said
(Deliver me)
Hey
If My people, who are called by My name
Will move themselves and pray
(Deliver me)
Seek my face, turn from their wicked ways
I will hear from Heaven
Break it on down

So it is
It is so
Amen
Now when we pray
We wanna end that with a declaration, a decree
So I'm speaking for all of you listening

Starting here, starting now
The things that hurt you in the past won't control your future
Starting now, this is a new day
This is your exodus, you are officially released
Now sing it for me Le'Andria

Yeah
(This is my Exodus)
I'm saying goodbye
(This is my Exodus)
To the old me, yeah
(This is my Exodus)
Oh, oh, oh
(Thank You Lord)
And I'm saying hello
(Thank You Lord)
To the brand new me, yeah
(Thank You Lord)
Hey, hey, hey-yeah

This is
(This is my Exodus)
I declare it
(This is my Exodus)
And I decree
(This is my Exodus)
Hey this is, this day, this day is why I thank You Lord
(This is my Exodus)
(Thank You Lord)
Around
(Thank You Lord)
For you and for me
(Thank You Lord)
Yeah-hey-hey-yeah

Now, Lord God
(This is my Exodus)
Now Lord God
(This is my Exodus)
It is my
(This is my Exodus)
The things sent to break me down
(This is my Exodus)
Yeah hey thank You Lord
(Thank You Lord)
Hey-hey-hey, hey-hey-hey, hey-hey-hey, hey-yeah
(Thank You Lord)
Every weapon
(Thank You Lord)
God, You, You, You to me, there for me

Source: https://www.facebook.com/501522249921574/posts/deliver-me-this-is-my-exodusdonald-lawrence-the-tri-city-singers-feat-leandria-j/2747779225295854/

****
Thanks for visiting pancocojams.

Visitor comments are welcome.