What we can learn from RHOA in Africa

I have a confession: I watch the Real Housewives of Atlanta. Religiously. Now, before you tune out, I watch and examine the show as a sociologist and scholar of the African Diaspora. These years of watching the shenanigans of RHOA have culminated in the glorious spectacle that was the cast visiting South Africa. When I heard about these infamous Atlanta socialites spending time on the continent I covered my eyes in fearful anticipation. Without fail, the last few episodes have delivered cringe worthy moments (like Marlo trying to buy children perm kits) but in the midst of my cringing, I realized that the cast’s (mis)conceptions of Africa were not much different than those shared by many folks in my life. If we uncover our eyes long enough to watch, we may see some all too common trends in the relationships between African-Americans and the continent of Africa. In watching RHOA, I was reminded that there is a lot of healing to be done between the Motherland and her Diasporic children.

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Filed under: Black Women, Politics, Sociology, Television

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