“I remember the Daily Mail wrote an article about my sister (Ms Dynamite) at the time,” he says, “and essentially their argument was, ‘Well, she’s not really black, is she – she’s quite clever and she’s got a white mum!’ It was so funny the way they tried to co-opt us. Remember that big story about Bob Marley and his ‘white dad’ last year? He was unequivocally black power, but he’s rewritten as this fun-loving Rasta. Mark Duggan [the Tottenham man shot by police in August 2011] was also mixed race, but no one’s ever going to co-opt Mark Duggan!”
“There’s an intellectual culture among young, working-class African-Caribbean children that comes from a certain strain of hip-hop – Gil Scott-Heron, Rastafarianism – and it’s completely absent from any narrative of that world,” he says. “My sister was worshipped in a way I can’t tell you; when we went to Brixton or Tottenham they wouldn’t let her pay for anything. And although no one said it out loud, we all knew it was because she was representing a side of intellectual black culture that is never usually acknowledged.
“I hate to say it, but this country is not comfortable with the idea of young, intelligent black people – especially men.
[Rapper Akala talks to The Guardian. Click here to read the full interview]
This is why I respect Akala. This man is no coward. He speaks his mind and tells it like it is. #NeverScared
I agree with what he says about this country not being comfortable with the idea of young, intelligent black people, especially men. This could explain why so many high profile black men particularly in the entertainment industry insist on dumbing down their intelligence whenever they step in front of a camera.
Your thoughts please…