Ghana : Even African Americans are considered "obruni" in Ghana

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Even African Americans are considered "obruni" in Ghana

.......Thanks dustyelbow for providing this invaluable information. We have a lot of educating to do with our brothers and sisters in Alkebu-lan(Africa).

I was talking to a friend of mine who visited Ghana and mentioned it is common for Ghanaian's to refer to Black Americans by the term Obruni (white foreigner). This is a little shocking and distressing to some Blacks who feel they have gone home to Africa only to have their African Brothers and Sisters refer to them as 'White". This was also mentioned during a program I saw when the Obama's visited Ghana during their Africa trip.
Dawud - speaking as a Ghanaian, I can confirm that people call Black Americans "Obroni" and it can be quite a wrenching experience for many Black Americans--understandably so. In fact, some Black Americans have told me that going to Africa made them realize that they were more American than African.

My view is that people associate the foreign-ness with language, culture, clothing and accent more than skin color. Even with skin color, the average "Black" American is significantly more "white" than the average Ghanaian, so it's a way to differentiate. That does not necessarily mean they don't recognize the historical ties.

From what I hear, other African countries too refer to African Americans as "white foreigner." Perhaps someone on this forum can help break down the connotations of those other expressions.

about 6 months ago

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Akátá is a word derived from the Yoruba people of West Africa and it simply means 'fox'. It is thought to be widely used loosely by some African immigrants to the United States to describe African Americans and their descendants, and over time it has come to have derogatory connotations due to perceived tensions between some African immigrants and African Americans.

There are many false rumors about the origin of the word, its West African etymology means it cannot mean words like slave orcotton picker because languages such as Akan Twi and the Yoruba language have words for these already. It is thought to be disparaging because of the general negative attitude some African immigrants to the U.S. have about African Americans[citation needed]. Rumors about the word have developed, often with the ones claiming the word to be offensive not asking for the proper definition by those that use the word, with the resulting connotation being a result of misunderstanding and miscommunication.
Its geographical origin is Nigerian of West Africa.


It may also be used to describe a cat that does not live at home, whereas the cat that lives at home is called Ologbo or Ologinni; "akata" may, by metaphorical implication, suggest that African Americans are blacks that do not reside on the African continent. The term was popularised in Hollywood by the movie Sugar Hill featuring Wesley Snipes and Michael Wright; in the film, Nigerian drug dealers referred to the pair as "akatas, American cotton pickers". Because of this, it often used to describe any African living outside of Africa, though Yorubas tend not to use it in a derogatory manner. It is generally used by many Nigerians living in the United States, as well as other Africans.[citation needed]. Among the Akan people mainly in Ghana (Ashanti's) the word is used to refer to people that are associated with the life style of hip-hop like nature (one who dresses and walks like a hip-hop artiste).


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