TED Conversations

mary kariuki

This conversation is closed.

If you have NEVER been to Africa, when someone mentions "Africa" or you hear "Africa", what is the FIRST thing that comes into your mind?

People associate different regions/continent based on media, informational material, myths, stereotypes and such. The main idea of this discussion is to find out what people who never had "first hand experience" think about the continent. Thanks for your contribution.


Showing single comment thread. View the full conversation.

  • Mar 26 2013: Poor, starving people, half of which are infected with AIDS, fighting and killing, rape, female circumcision, neck modification, and if I'm in an optimistic mood, pyramids. But then I remember all the drama in the North and malaria and I resolve that I probably will never visit them. O and the Nile being disgustingly polluted like the Ganges. Oh and the wildlife, lions, tigers, zebras, giraffes etc. And then of course poaching.
    • thumb
      Mar 28 2013: Hey Michelle,
      Thanks for your honest answer.
      I am lost of words Michelle. I don't know how I can convince you that Africa is just like any other "normal" country. The media just show the negatives and the percentages shown can't be used to represent the whole; there is great side of Africa and great people too.
      There is malaria vaccine for tourist and even locals.......
      For instance in Kenya. I would approximate less than 1% of female undergoes female circumcision and some advocates such as Kakenya are fighting for women rights.
      What is neck modification?

      Love, Mary
      • Mar 28 2013: I realize I'm probably totally ignorant of what it really is like. I know how the media shapes my perceptions and how warped the perception can be as a result. But yeah, without direct experience I take myself with a grain of salt lol
        O http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Neck_ring

        Didn't realize until I looked it up that it was an Asian practice too.
        I really would like to see the pyramids some day.

        I'm glad female circumcision is so low. It came up in discussion at a class I took in college and freaked me out.

        I know there are a lot of shots to take if touring Africa from acquaintances that have gone. Lots of prep I understand if you're to go there.
        • thumb
          Mar 29 2013: Thanks Michelle.....lol...fir the neck modification thing...I did not know about it. The women look amazing though I can't imagine rings on my neck...but maybe...
          I am glad you recognition the major role of media in shaping our perception which can turn out to be far from reality.And yes, there is so much to gain and learn on a visit to Africa.....Hint/ Don't stress about what to expect and all that stuff...open mindedness is the way to enjoy the trip and surely to have a lifetime experience......Love, Mary

Showing single comment thread. View the full conversation.