English Subtitles for Our identity | Afua Hirsch | TEDxTottenham



Subtitles / Closed Captions - English

<font color="#CCCCCC">when everyone we have up</font>

<font color="#CCCCCC">and there's a serious issue</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> a critical</font> issue<font color="#E5E5E5"> a fundamental issue that we as a</font> society<font color="#CCCCCC"> don't talk about well I talk</font> about it i'm talking about it now<font color="#E5E5E5"> but in</font> my experience the more influential <font color="#E5E5E5">senior powerful people in</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> Turkey</font>

<font color="#E5E5E5">establishments tend to be the</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> left</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> able</font> they are to talk about it what am<font color="#CCCCCC"> I talking</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> about identity</font> <font color="#E5E5E5">heritage ethnicity race to me these are</font> crucial aspects of<font color="#CCCCCC"> our</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> being</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> our lives</font> <font color="#E5E5E5">our legacy but</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> i think that it's</font>

something that in this society for<font color="#E5E5E5"> our</font> own cultural and historical and political reasons we really<font color="#CCCCCC"> struggled to</font> grapple with<font color="#CCCCCC"> i'll give you an example</font> the other day I met a former colleague <font color="#CCCCCC">is very senior was close to my boss in</font>

an old professional life and<font color="#CCCCCC"> I haven't</font> seen<font color="#E5E5E5"> for years and he was complimenting</font> my decision to become a journalist which <font color="#E5E5E5">I now</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> AM and he was being very</font> flattering he said<font color="#E5E5E5"> it's great that you become a</font>

journalist because<font color="#E5E5E5"> your women</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> we need</font> more female journalists<font color="#E5E5E5"> you have great</font> ideas <font color="#E5E5E5">you're young well I'm relative to him</font> and<font color="#E5E5E5"> and then he looked nervous he said</font> and you're any kind of looked to the

right<font color="#CCCCCC"> fit</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> a bit with his fingers he</font> looked<font color="#E5E5E5"> to the left foot down and then he</font> said in your<font color="#CCCCCC"> I couldn't help but laugh</font> <font color="#CCCCCC">tried</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> not to let</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> him see me laughing and</font> at<font color="#CCCCCC"> that and i wondered why is it so</font> awkward for him to say something that to

me is so obvious and it's not an isolated experience and I think<font color="#E5E5E5"> there</font> are various reasons why this happens it happens all the time and<font color="#CCCCCC"> I think</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> one of</font> them is that he wasn't sure if that was an insulting thing to say<font color="#E5E5E5"> and on the</font>

<font color="#E5E5E5">other hand maybe he was unsure as to</font> whether that's<font color="#E5E5E5"> also how I see myself and</font> that's<font color="#E5E5E5"> not as crazy as it might sound</font> because<font color="#E5E5E5"> I've encounter various competing</font> theories as to my<font color="#CCCCCC"> density</font> <font color="#CCCCCC">the other day I went for lunch</font>

with my partner<font color="#CCCCCC"> who's from Tottenham</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> and</font> his eight-year-old nephew<font color="#E5E5E5"> and it was no</font> big deal we went to<font color="#E5E5E5"> welcome i</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> had some</font> noodles<font color="#E5E5E5"> and when the bill came his</font> nephew asked if<font color="#E5E5E5"> he could see it and then</font> his uncle said<font color="#CCCCCC"> oh</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> it's very expensive</font>

<font color="#E5E5E5">and he said how much</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> and it's almost</font> <font color="#E5E5E5">like it was</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> a</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> hundred pounds which</font> wasn't true<font color="#E5E5E5"> and then his eyes a little</font> <font color="#E5E5E5">eyes widened with fear and he said how</font> <font color="#E5E5E5">we gonna pay it and</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> has long said</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> joking</font> <font color="#E5E5E5">i should add let's just make a dash for</font>

the door and his nephew said we can't do that<font color="#CCCCCC"> on call</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> and</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> as long as my said we</font> could and then<font color="#CCCCCC"> long</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> said I suppose</font> <font color="#CCCCCC">you're why would it would be it would be</font> pretty conspicuous the only<font color="#CCCCCC"> three black</font> <font color="#E5E5E5">people in the restaurant making a</font>

<font color="#E5E5E5">dashboard or without paying</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> and then</font> <font color="#CCCCCC">they</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> said they're not</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> three black people</font> <font color="#CCCCCC">there's two black people</font> she's white<font color="#CCCCCC"> pointing</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> at me</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> I think when</font> he said that what he meant was that<font color="#E5E5E5"> i</font> don't fit<font color="#E5E5E5"> the image that he has mind of</font>

<font color="#E5E5E5">a black person he's from</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> Tottenham</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> in</font> his mind<font color="#E5E5E5"> people who are black live here</font> talk a certain way<font color="#CCCCCC"> do certain things</font> he's thinking of his friends and family around him <font color="#CCCCCC">I'm from Wimbledon I grew up there</font>

<font color="#E5E5E5">physically it's pretty far away from</font> <font color="#CCCCCC">Tottenham but culturally and</font> psychologically is another world<font color="#E5E5E5"> away</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> i</font> was one of very few black children<font color="#E5E5E5"> my</font> school<font color="#E5E5E5"> there was one other black girl in</font> my year at school and<font color="#E5E5E5"> I've been thinking</font>

<font color="#E5E5E5">about her lately because there's one</font> incident that happened when we were about 11 years old<font color="#CCCCCC"> really practice</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> my</font> consciousness we were on a residential school trip and<font color="#E5E5E5"> there are about 15 of</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> us</font> sharing<font color="#CCCCCC"> a big dormitory and as happens</font>

on<font color="#CCCCCC"> a school field trip they organize</font> events<font color="#E5E5E5"> for some evening so we would all</font> go out in the evening<font color="#E5E5E5"> but she didn't</font> want to come she wanted to stay in the room and I remember the first time she did that<font color="#E5E5E5"> thinking why</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> does she want</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> to</font>

stay behind<font color="#E5E5E5"> anyway she stayed behind and</font> when we came back from our evening we realize what she's been doing cleaning <font color="#E5E5E5">she had gone around the entire dorm and</font> cleaned it picked up everyone's clothes folded them in a neat pile<font color="#CCCCCC"> swept the</font>

floor and<font color="#CCCCCC"> up</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> that really affected me and</font> I remember not really understand <font color="#CCCCCC">think</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> it but now looking back I</font> understand<font color="#E5E5E5"> a lot better</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> i think</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> she'd</font> internalised<font color="#CCCCCC"> a sense of inferiority</font> <font color="#CCCCCC">there</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> any way she could really relate to</font>

being in that situation was to see herself in a position of servitude<font color="#E5E5E5"> and</font> now as an adult looking back I find that really really disturbing and<font color="#CCCCCC"> i think i</font> understand much better the implications of what was happening in our minds at

that time<font color="#E5E5E5"> my</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> white school friends either</font> unable or unwilling to kind of process <font color="#E5E5E5">the repercussions of this</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> tried to</font> reassure me and said to me don't<font color="#CCCCCC"> worry</font> <font color="#E5E5E5">don't see you as black</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> which in their in</font> their<font color="#E5E5E5"> mind was with to say the negative</font>

connotations of her identity<font color="#CCCCCC"> we can just</font> try to ignore with you will<font color="#CCCCCC"> deny</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> them</font> <font color="#CCCCCC">will</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> look away and it's fine</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> which is to</font> me<font color="#E5E5E5"> problematic for very very very many</font> reasons<font color="#E5E5E5"> so</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> I'm telling you</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> this because</font> not because<font color="#CCCCCC"> I</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> think you should be</font>

intrinsically interested in my identity <font color="#CCCCCC">or the journey that I've been on but</font> because i think it does say something wider<font color="#E5E5E5"> about the society we live in</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> when</font> <font color="#CCCCCC">i was growing up it was very rare to see</font> people who look like me<font color="#E5E5E5"> especially my</font>

world it<font color="#E5E5E5"> wasn't</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> talking I'm sure</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> but now</font> <font color="#CCCCCC">these images that everywhere and it's</font> become a commodity<font color="#E5E5E5"> ethnicity race</font> identity <font color="#E5E5E5">it's become something we used to sell</font> things<font color="#CCCCCC"> it's become a way of cashing in</font>

on the appearance of things being diverse and to me that's not progress and it affects me personally because wherever<font color="#E5E5E5"> I've studied</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> your work and</font> <font color="#E5E5E5">don't</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> get me wrong</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> I</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> I think</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> I'm a good</font> student<font color="#E5E5E5"> and</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> i work hard</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> but my image</font>

always seems to somehow<font color="#E5E5E5"> wind up on</font> publicity or promotion<font color="#CCCCCC"> the matter where</font> <font color="#CCCCCC">I am and this is when i was at</font> <font color="#E5E5E5">university I can't tell you how</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> i ended</font> <font color="#E5E5E5">up on the cover of our perspectives but</font> I was picked out and said you must tell

<font color="#E5E5E5">your inspiring story</font> well<font color="#CCCCCC"> I</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> went</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> to private school in</font> <font color="#CCCCCC">wimbledon so i'm not sure exactly how</font> inspiring my story is<font color="#E5E5E5"> and at work</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> I get</font> <font color="#E5E5E5">told please go and tell your inspiring</font> story

<font color="#CCCCCC">I mean I think</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> I'm you know I've got</font> some<font color="#E5E5E5"> I've got some some feathers to my</font> cat but I don't think it's motivated by the right factors<font color="#E5E5E5"> and to me this</font> <font color="#CCCCCC">is not progress this is going backwards</font> this is slapping a superficial label of

diversity and opportunity<font color="#CCCCCC"> onto</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> a</font> <font color="#E5E5E5">situation</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> that is really not</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> because if</font> we didn't live in a society that was fair<font color="#CCCCCC"> there would be</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> hundreds of black</font> <font color="#E5E5E5">people at all the places</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> I've studied</font> and worked<font color="#CCCCCC"> he</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> would have organically</font>

well on their way onto its promotional material<font color="#E5E5E5"> they wouldn't have had to go</font> around picking the only one they could find which is often me so<font color="#CCCCCC"> I don't think</font> <font color="#E5E5E5">that we live in a post-racial society</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> I</font> don't think we've tackled many of these

problems and<font color="#CCCCCC"> i'll</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> tell you</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> why</font> if you look at any typical<font color="#E5E5E5"> magazine</font> stand and look at who is on the front covers or if you look at the world family or if you look at the<font color="#CCCCCC"> Supreme</font> <font color="#CCCCCC">Court</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> or if you look at the house of</font>

<font color="#E5E5E5">commons</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> front bench</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> or if you look at a</font> selection of typical selection of<font color="#E5E5E5"> 50-100</font> <font color="#CCCCCC">CEOs you can really see who is in</font> control of this country who really has power how<font color="#CCCCCC"> fair things really have become</font> <font color="#E5E5E5">and you can contrast that to the images</font>

that you see in advertising and publicity where<font color="#CCCCCC"> everybody's trying to</font> show that we do live in a fair society <font color="#CCCCCC">I don't think that we've come as far as</font> we should<font color="#E5E5E5"> now and</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> I think</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> that this is</font> more complicated by the fact that our

identities are becoming more complicated and being a black<font color="#E5E5E5"> woman is not the</font> product of who<font color="#CCCCCC"> I am and I see myself as</font> a black woman<font color="#CCCCCC"> i'm i'm half gone in I</font> have<font color="#CCCCCC"> english heritage I have to</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> reach</font> heritage<font color="#E5E5E5"> and</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> I'm</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> very proud very proud</font>

of who<font color="#CCCCCC"> I am and</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> I've come through that</font> journey and what<font color="#CCCCCC"> I think is very</font> <font color="#CCCCCC">positive</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> way</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> and</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> what I love about</font> London is the diversity and the fact that nobody can be summarized by their race or by their parents country of

origin or<font color="#E5E5E5"> by the language that they</font> spoke first it's so much more complicated map<font color="#E5E5E5"> and</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> I</font> think that's a beautiful thing<font color="#CCCCCC"> on the</font> other<font color="#E5E5E5"> hand it makes it that much more</font> hard to gather together in<font color="#CCCCCC"> the</font>

consciousness<font color="#E5E5E5"> of the struggles that we</font> still have to fight in our communities <font color="#E5E5E5">the other day for my job</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> I'm a reporter</font> for<font color="#CCCCCC"> sky knees</font> <font color="#E5E5E5">I covered a protest that was happening</font> in<font color="#CCCCCC"> London over</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> an art exhibition some of</font>

you may have heard about it<font color="#CCCCCC"> it was</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> by a</font> white<font color="#CCCCCC"> South African artists</font> <font color="#E5E5E5">and it depicted a human</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> Zoo which was an</font> <font color="#E5E5E5">exhibition alive installation of black</font> people in<font color="#CCCCCC"> chains in cages</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> and the idea</font> was that it was supposed to play on the

history of<font color="#CCCCCC"> freak</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> exhibitions when black</font> people<font color="#CCCCCC"> Africans</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> or pygmies were paraded</font> around like wild animals or museum exhibits to be looked upon with fascination<font color="#CCCCCC"> of horror</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> and</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> the artist</font> claimed he was exploring that legacy of

racism of the objectification of black <font color="#E5E5E5">people the problem many black people had</font> was that they felt that instead of exploring it with the genuine intention of progressing he was exploiting it for his own gain<font color="#E5E5E5"> and that it wasn't being</font>

done with the true intent of raising people up but instead<font color="#E5E5E5"> deepening that</font> exploitation<font color="#E5E5E5"> and so there were protests</font> outside the exhibition in<font color="#CCCCCC"> London which I</font> covered and<font color="#E5E5E5"> and it was slightly</font> embarrassing actually because<font color="#CCCCCC"> i'm a</font>

reporter<font color="#E5E5E5"> I have to be objective</font> my job is to cover stories and show both sides which<font color="#CCCCCC"> I strive to do as I think</font> all good<font color="#CCCCCC"> journalist do and outside this</font> protest which was an incredible amalgamation of people of all

generations<font color="#E5E5E5"> and all backgrounds</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> or</font> rallying together over<font color="#CCCCCC"> this strong sense</font> of injustice and the sense that the legacy and the history of their ancestors was being denigrated for financial gain by this artist

eventually the exhibition was<font color="#E5E5E5"> closed</font> down<font color="#E5E5E5"> and when I stood there doing my</font> <font color="#E5E5E5">piece</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> of camera i</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> realize later that</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> I</font> <font color="#E5E5E5">actually</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> look very pleased</font> <font color="#E5E5E5">uh-huh which isn't ideal but what what</font> made me happy about that was not that<font color="#CCCCCC"> it</font>

had been<font color="#E5E5E5"> closed down because</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> I believe</font> in freedom of expression and I think it's good that we even have a debate about these things<font color="#E5E5E5"> but because it was so</font> encouraging to see people from the city from different backgrounds all drawn

together<font color="#E5E5E5"> because of their identity</font> because of their heritage fighting for it with a genuine sense of consciousness and that to me was an uplifting thing but it's something that is difficult to do and<font color="#CCCCCC"> I think</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> part of the reason</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> it's</font>

difficult<font color="#E5E5E5"> to do is because we still</font> struggle to speak about our identity is something in this society that makes it hard for people to talk about engage with it<font color="#CCCCCC"> now i'm</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> in</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> Tottenham it</font> feels kind of weird talking to you about

the difficulties of expressing identity and my experience people from<font color="#E5E5E5"> talking</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> to</font> have a very very strong sense of community and a very easy with their identities and<font color="#CCCCCC"> it's something that</font> people from my background<font color="#E5E5E5"> feel quite</font>

generous<font color="#CCCCCC"> even</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> though</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> i had so many</font> privileges<font color="#CCCCCC"> but i didn't</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> have was that</font> sense of community and identity that<font color="#CCCCCC"> I</font> could easily be part of<font color="#CCCCCC"> but</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> even people</font> from<font color="#CCCCCC"> Tottenham</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> and I think suffer from</font> this and<font color="#CCCCCC"> I recently interviewed a group</font>

of young women<font color="#CCCCCC"> for</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> investigation that</font> <font color="#CCCCCC">i'm doing and from Tottenham</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> and it was</font> about a negative experience that<font color="#CCCCCC"> they'd</font> <font color="#E5E5E5">had work and some really a horrific</font> <font color="#E5E5E5">treatment</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> they experience from their</font> employers and they very articulately<font color="#E5E5E5"> and</font>

<font color="#E5E5E5">bravely</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> catalog a series of</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> things that</font> <font color="#E5E5E5">happened at work and</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> I</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> interviewed</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> them</font> together with my white<font color="#CCCCCC"> quality of work</font> <font color="#CCCCCC">very closely with</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> and it was very</font> powerful testimony that they all gave <font color="#E5E5E5">and after that was all finished</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> begin to</font>

meet them for several hours <font color="#CCCCCC">I want them out of the</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> building by</font> myself and<font color="#E5E5E5"> then I casually mentioned so</font> the perpetrators the senior people in this organization<font color="#CCCCCC"> you are treating</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> this</font> way<font color="#CCCCCC"> where they</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> was there was there a</font>

racial element and they said of course there<font color="#E5E5E5"> was they were white wearing black</font> it was completely<font color="#E5E5E5"> racial and</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> I said but</font> you never<font color="#CCCCCC"> mentioned that and they all</font> went silent<font color="#E5E5E5"> and</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> i realized</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> that in the</font> form<font color="#E5E5E5"> an environment of my studio work</font>

<font color="#E5E5E5">among white</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> journalists</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> they felt</font> uncomfortable saying that they weren't sure if it was<font color="#CCCCCC"> okay</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> it was only away</font> <font color="#E5E5E5">from that they felt comfortable talking</font> about something which clearly amongst themselves they<font color="#CCCCCC"> talk about constantly</font>

<font color="#CCCCCC">and I'm the first to admit that the</font> media often takes a sledgehammer to our identities<font color="#CCCCCC"> even though I'm a journalist</font> <font color="#E5E5E5">I'm and perhaps because</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> i'm a journalist</font> <font color="#CCCCCC">I'm</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> incredibly aware of it</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> the</font> newspapers are often<font color="#E5E5E5"> complain about</font>

immigration statistics saying that they don't<font color="#CCCCCC"> betray the true cost of</font> immigration because they don't talk about<font color="#CCCCCC"> second and third</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> generation</font> immigrants well<font color="#E5E5E5"> I'm a second generation</font> <font color="#E5E5E5">immigrant and</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> I'm not the second</font>

<font color="#CCCCCC">generation immigrant I British and the</font> idea that you can label people <font color="#E5E5E5">put them in statistics measuring the</font> impact of immigration because<font color="#E5E5E5"> of their</font> parents or grandparents<font color="#E5E5E5"> well if that</font> were true

Winston Churchill would be an immigrant and so<font color="#E5E5E5"> would</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> Princes William and Harry</font> this is obviously a double standard there and the media often does things that<font color="#E5E5E5"> I find problematic just like that</font> recently a friend of mine who works for

a high-profile<font color="#E5E5E5"> news magazine which shall</font> remain nameless<font color="#E5E5E5"> was working on a story</font> about the<font color="#E5E5E5"> bola</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> and she was asked to</font> solicit a video diary from a<font color="#E5E5E5"> British</font> <font color="#E5E5E5">volunteer</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> had gone</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> to</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> Sierra Leone to</font> help with<font color="#E5E5E5"> the</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> bowler</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> and there are many</font>

<font color="#E5E5E5">people from</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> the</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> city in</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> this country who</font> <font color="#CCCCCC">have gone to help and</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> to a charity</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> she</font> found<font color="#E5E5E5"> brilliant british guy who did a</font> really powerful diary for her<font color="#E5E5E5"> about a</font> day in his life working with victims of <font color="#E5E5E5">Ebola and when this magazine</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> sore</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> the</font>

diary they said oh no we can't use it<font color="#E5E5E5"> she said</font> why and<font color="#CCCCCC"> he</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> said he's not British</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> enough</font> <font color="#E5E5E5">he was black</font> his<font color="#E5E5E5"> name's not</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> British enough he doesn't</font> <font color="#CCCCCC">look British enough</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> and that my friend</font>

was asked to go back to this charity and say could you please find someone else because he just doesn't fit the bill so where is that outcry<font color="#E5E5E5"> whereas a debate</font> where is the open discussion about these issues it still doesn't happen and<font color="#CCCCCC"> I and</font>

other friends of mine media<font color="#E5E5E5"> struggle to</font> find<font color="#CCCCCC"> high-profile people to talk about</font> these things<font color="#E5E5E5"> to openly speak about the</font> things that they witness<font color="#CCCCCC"> is easy to find</font> people who<font color="#E5E5E5"> are struggling from</font> oppression and<font color="#CCCCCC"> prejudice to speak about</font>

it but when you find successful people who<font color="#CCCCCC"> push</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> through those barriers they</font> don't want to be associated with the struggles with the prejudice that goes along with ethnicity and race and identity they just want to go quietly

enjoying their success<font color="#E5E5E5"> and</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> I</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> think</font> that's partly their<font color="#CCCCCC"> responsibilities of</font> course but it also<font color="#CCCCCC"> said something about</font> our society that if you are the black person speaking about race nobody wants to go near you suddenly

become a bit<font color="#E5E5E5"> topic</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> bit threatening</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> so we</font> can't live in a post-racial society until we've lived in a racial society <font color="#CCCCCC">until we've acknowledged the differences</font> the<font color="#CCCCCC"> Heritage not</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> in an egg</font> <font color="#CCCCCC">give way but in a rich way of what</font>

builds the fabric of our society and in saying that<font color="#CCCCCC"> i'm not</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> saying that</font> everything is about race<font color="#E5E5E5"> because of</font> course<font color="#E5E5E5"> we're all part of one beautiful</font> <font color="#E5E5E5">healing humanity and there's nowhere</font> that's where<font color="#E5E5E5"> than</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> Tottenham I think and</font>

there's<font color="#CCCCCC"> more that differentiates people</font> within<font color="#CCCCCC"> my</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> ethnic groups and there is</font> between them<font color="#E5E5E5"> and when you try to</font> classify people by race we all know what happens you only have to look at<font color="#E5E5E5"> Nazi</font> Germany or apartheid<font color="#CCCCCC"> South Africa</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> to see</font>

the complete futility of trying to classify people by race<font color="#CCCCCC"> a white person</font> is any person<font color="#E5E5E5"> who in appearance</font> <font color="#E5E5E5">obviously or who is generally accepted</font> as a white person other than a person who<font color="#CCCCCC"> although an appearance obviously a</font>

white person is generally accepted as a <font color="#CCCCCC">colored person</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> that really makes sense</font> <font color="#CCCCCC">so this</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> is not to advocate that I think</font> that we should start reducing everything to racial or ethnic level<font color="#CCCCCC"> it</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> simply to</font> say that<font color="#E5E5E5"> these are issues that matter to</font>

us and<font color="#CCCCCC"> I think that as the world</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> becomes</font> <font color="#E5E5E5">smaller as national boundaries breakdown</font> and<font color="#CCCCCC"> globalization continues</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> identities</font> become more important<font color="#E5E5E5"> you just have to</font> look at what happened in<font color="#CCCCCC"> Scotland or</font> <font color="#E5E5E5">what's happening with</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> you get</font><font color="#E5E5E5"> to see how</font>

desperate people are to cling on to an identity that means something to them <font color="#CCCCCC">and so this issue is only going to</font> become more important we need to embrace it we need to speak about it<font color="#E5E5E5"> and so</font><font color="#CCCCCC"> I</font> hope<font color="#CCCCCC"> that in future we will be able to</font>

have<font color="#CCCCCC"> frank conversations about this and</font> we will be able to imagine a different future



Video Description

This talk was given at a local TEDx event, produced independently of the TED Conferences.
Afua argues that we as a society have not yet come to terms with the importance of new identities and have not developed the language or cultural ability to embrace them.


Afua Hirsch is the Social Affairs and Education Editor for Sky News. Before joining the broadcaster earlier this year, she worked for the Guardian Newspaper as it’s first West Africa correspondent.


About TEDx, x = independently organized event In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. At a TEDx event, TEDTalks video and live speakers combine to spark deep discussion and connection in a small group. These local, self-organized events are branded TEDx, where x = independently organized TED event. The TED Conference provides general guidance for the TEDx program, but individual TEDx events are self-organized.* (*Subject to certain rules and regulations)