Yagazie Emezi


Cultural Anthropologist & Africanist

None of the images posted here belong to me unless stated otherwise.





This morning at 4 am (GMT) I received a text from my sister that read, “Beyonce has a new album that also has 17 videos and Chimamanda’s on it!!!” Half sleeping, I thought I mis-read, but a few minutes later I got insanely happy. I hadn’t heard the song yet, and had no idea what the collaboration would sound or look like, but I knew that it would have something to do with feminism, and at that moment, I knew there was no way I could go back to sleep.

It’s almost like when you have a brain fart, because something that seems so random is actually perfection and it’s like these are the collaborations that we’ll continue talking about for decades, and I’m just sad that I can’t quit my job and be a part of Beyonce’s creative team so that my life can have meaning. But brain fart aside, the collaboration between Chimamanda and Beyonce takes shape in the track ‘***Flawless‘ and begins with the controversial ‘Bow Down Bitches‘ before transforming into the perfect boughetto anthem of black womynism.

Chimamanda’s contribution to the song is a speech, which consists of elements of her lauded TEDx2013 address ‘we should all be feminists.’ While I’m sure many could be confused as to how Beyonce’s lyrics connect with Adichie’s call to feminism it’s that very confusion that addresses the critical feminism that both Adichie and Beyonce speak to. When ‘Bow Down’ was released (or leaked?) earlier this year, there was a lot of discussion that Beyonce telling other women to ‘bow down’ was anti-feminist, which is what most white feminists declare whenever Beyonce does anything. Many have critically examined why white feminists need to leave Bey alone, but ‘Flawless’ hails as a powerful response to the notion that being feminist has to be strictly defined. In tandem with Chimamanda’s call to feminism- both Chimamanda and Beyonce are also critical of a feminism that doesn’t recognize a women’s right to speak through her body and sexuality (which is what many try and shame Beyonce for).

What I love about how Beyonce speaks through feminism, is how simplistic the language is. It reminds me of Nigerian feminist author Buchi Emecheta’s critical intervention to western narratives of feminism, where she calls for a recognition of feminism with a small ‘f’- opening our eyes to the fact that African women achieve in different measures, and also that women live in and through their decisions to be whatever they want to be. Even though Emecheta refers to ‘feminism with a small f’ in a starkly different framework than female super stardom- I think it resonates through it’s recognition of the varying and supposedly contradictory ways we can lead our lives and still be feminists. For Beyonce, it’s really as simple as saying “I woke up like dis. I look good tonight’ and it’s interconnectedness to conversations of womanism that happens through ‘diaspora’ with Chimamanda is still causing brain farts in my mind.



maryam on the money with this! 

How do I tell a guy I’m really not in interested in him and that I just want to hang out so I can play with his puppies in his backyard?



In Color, Chromophobia, and Colonialism: Some Historical Thoughts, Carolyn Purnell outlines how in 18th and 19th Century Europe “bright colors were taken as a sign of degeneracy and inferiority.” For those (presumably very dull looking) Europeans, colour was associated with childishness and a lack of civilization.

Since “all black everything” and “all white” interiors are still taken as the height of sophistication in some circles, the images collected here highlight the fact that looks which manage to make a range of colours, patterns and textures cohere are hard to achieve. They indicate intelligence, taste and intuition. 

So, from top to bottom, props to:

UK-based fashion editor Julia Sarr Jamois
Stylist + Studio Africa Guest Editor Louis Phillipe De Gagoue
Stylist and creative consultant Marian Kihogo
Founder + editor of POPAfricana Oroma Elewa
Artist, Model + Studio Africa Guest Editor Fola Adeoso  
Shot by Anthony Bila/The Expressionist. What the model’s name? She is killing it! 


Traditional Nigerian occupations captured by documentary photographer Muyiwa Osifuye.

Cloth Weaving: Nigeria is famous for the numerous types of fabric which were traditionally woven by hand, but today modern technology has taken over. Fabrics include the famous “Aso oke”, traditionally worn by royalty but nowadays for special occasions, “Adire” or tie and dye and “Ankara” among the Yoruba and “George” among the Igbo. 

Pottery: Among the Yoruba, potters were traditionally women, but in the north they were men. Traditional pots were made for ritual purposes, water vessels and cooking.

Palm Wine Tapping: Wine tapping is another occupation from the past which still continues today. The female or red Abe (Oil palm tree) is used for palm kernels from which you get palm oil used in cooking, manufacture of margarine and soap. The sap of the male or white Abe is used to make Palm wine, which is a popular traditional beer all over West Africa. 

Wood Carving: Wood carvers traditionally built shrines which are used to worship traditional gods and lots of their work centered around masks and figures in this regard. However, they also make lots of figure ornaments and carvings of people and animals. 

Bronze and Metal Casting: Ife and Benin are famous all over the world for their bronze and metal carvings. Traditionally a lot of these elaborate masks and carvings were made to decorate the royal palaces, or for use in ceremonial occasions and traditional shrines. Sadly a lot of these national heirlooms are now housed in museums or private collections around the world.



Just came across the artwork of Jamilla Okubo, a Kenyan artist and textile designer currently attending Parsons and majoring in Integrated Fashion Design. Collaging prints and paint, Okubo’s colorful illustrations carries what I see as the promise of a very creative and successful future. Can’t wait to see what more this young student has to offer. 

(via luvheritage)

Watch the Soweto Gospel Choir sing an incredible tribute to Madiba in Parkview store in Johannesburg. The song was written during Mandela’s incarceration as a call for his freedom. 

Asimbonanga [we have not seen him]
Asimbonang’ uMandela thina [we have not seen Mandela]
Laph’ekhona [in the place where he is]
Laph’ehleli khona [in the place where he is kept]

Asimbonang ‘umfowethu thina [we have not seen our brother]
Laph’ekhona [in the place where he is]
Laph’wafela khona [in the place where he died]
Sithi: Hey, wena [We say: hey, you]
Hey, wena nawe [Hey, you and you]
Siyofika nini la’ siyakhona [when will we arrive at our destination]

Asker motherlymarq Asks:
OHMGE! You have a tumblr! I follow you on Instagram but I'm never on. I love your illustrations!
yagazieemezi yagazieemezi Said:

Yess, I’ve BEEEENNN on tumblr! Thanks love!!

It’s my day off today and this is me doing what I do best. - by Yagazie



Follow award winning Hip-Hop producer and film director Iletunji, as he reclaims his ancestry from the infamous Door of No Return, known as a portal to slavery. Experience life to the rhythm of the world’s heartbeat. Witness one man reconcile the diaspora of his family and an entire people. 

So glad I decided to go out tonight, which is relatively rare for me. Had a blast celebrating my friend’s birthday simply because I decided to have zero expectations for the night.

My favorite part of it all was getting lost in deep conversation for about 2 hours with this Argentinian man whose friend came over to me baffled that we had been talking for so long because, well, homeboy had only started to learn English about 8 months ago.

Naturally, the night wouldn’t have been complete without me ending everything awkwardly by going for a kiss on the cheek and he was aiming for my lips and then I aimed for his lips and he aimed for my cheek and then htkr.gfb,jfbdfuck.


It seemed like the world had come to honor  Nelson Mandela at a massive memorial service drawing in about 100 heads of states, leaders and dignitaries. The service took place at the FNB Stadium in Soweto, the Johannesburg township that was a stronghold of support for the anti-apartheid struggle. Some of the distinguished faces included (in order of appearance); 

  1. President Barack Obama
  2. U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon + South African President Jacob Zuma 
  3. Spanish Prince Felipe de Borbon, Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto + Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper
  4. Former Archbishop Desmond Tutu + U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan
  5. Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton
  6. Singer Bono + actress Charlize Theron 
  7. Spain’s Prince Felipe
  8. Cuban President Raul Castro

"It’s supposed to be a funeral service, but you’ve never seen a funeral service like it. People are so proud and so grateful that he was with us, with us in our hour of need.We’re just so, so proud and happy."








I also clearly have a problem pronouncing ‘orgasm’!

Finally got around to finishing the video relating to a past experience, had to tie my hair up for this one! As mentioned in the video, the overall goal is to get young African women more comfortable around the conversation of sex. And comfortable enough to discuss it among their peers and educate themselves.

I love this woman. 

such a gorgeous accent

Why am I laughing so hard?

I’m in love with her accent.

1. Her accent.
2. Her in general.
3. The names she gave for masterbation.
4. Her message.
5. Her honesty.

(via danny-coop)


"Simply African is a series focusing on the traditional clothes, accessories, customs and social interactions between African people. This first volume was done in 2011 when I was very new to photography and features people from Ghana, Nigeria and Zimbabwe."

Enitan Adebowale

SAPE: Society of Ambienceurs and Elegant People:

At the beginning of the XXth century when the French arrived in Congo, the myth of the Parisian elegance was born among the youth of the Bakongo ethnic group, who were working for the colonizers. At that time, the white man was considered superior, someone showing better manners and elegance. In 1922, Grenard André Matsoua was the first Congolese ever to come back from Paris dressed as a genuine French. His arrival caused indescribable commotion and admiration among his fellow countrymen; he became known as the first Grand Sapeur.

Having the respect and admiration of his community, today’s Sapeurs consider themselves artists. They add a touch of glamour to their humble environment through their refined manners and impeccable dressing styles. Each of them is unique showing a particular repertoire of gestures. They all share the same dream derived from that myth: To go to Paris and return to Brazzaville as an aristocrat of supreme elegance.


I just put up this quote on my Facebook page and had a man respond to it basically stating how the same applies to men and questioning why it has to be along female lines.

I’m sharing my point of view AS A WOMAN and it is not my job to include the perspective of men for the sake of political (??) fairness.

And I’m tired of it.

Mention a negative black experience.

White folks: But it happens to us, too!

Mention a negative woman’s experience

Men: But that can happen to us, too!

Mention a broke life experience

Rich folks: I’ve been there before though!

No. By all means, feel free to share your personal experiences/opinions, but do not think that by you sharing similar (kind of) experiences that it automatically makes everything equal. And in my case, if you’re not a person of color, you’re not a woman, you’re not broke, don’t try and relate. You can share and we can sympathize with one another, but I will make you take a seat if I tell you (for example) that I’ve been hungry for a long ass time and you start talking of the one time in your life that you got peckish.