How to tweet about Africa: the lessons of Justine Sacco, race and sarcasm | Siri Srinivas

Wainaina’s essay is a brilliant, sarcastic take on the common vocabulary used to describe Africa in writing. Wainana, too, mentions Aids: “When your main character is in a desert or jungle living with indigenous peoples (anybody short) it is okay to mention that Africa has been severely depopulated by Aids and War (use caps).” The essay on the clichés adopted for Africa found appreciation, perhaps from the very people who had in their inauthentic writing “pitied, worshipped or dominated” Africa, as he commands in his guide. Wainaina’s dark humour won him acclaim. Sacco’s tweet destroyed her career.
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