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Are We Trading Away Our Nigerian Identities?

I have observed a trend in which most Nigerians who leave the country in search of greener pastures, in their eagerness to embrace the cultures of their new environments, not only take in the new cultures but also denigrate Nigerian ways of life outrightly. Whilst there may be aspects of our new found cultures that seem appealing to us, we do not have to take it for granted that such aspects will necessarily be of benefit to our own unique society.

Every society needs to devise ways of progress to suit it's own unique values, ways and aspirations.

The rest of the world mainly mirrors Nigeria from the view presented to them by those Nigerians who live abroad, no matter how much those Nigerians do not reflect the majority view or pattern. For instance, in my city, many people tend to think that Nigerians drink a lot and smoke a lot of weed because they meet many Nigerians who smoke weed. It is therefore imperative that Nigerians abroad think about the image we project to the rest of world by our utterances and our actions because these will ultimately affect future generations of Nigerians.

We, as Nigerians, have things which stand us out from the rest of the world. We have many things that we should celebrate and applaud about our ways of life. Of course, we also have negative things that need to be expunged. The attitude which seems to be prevalent with many of us who live abroad is one of disdain and contempt for anything that has a Nigerian touch. This is pathetic, to put it mildly. We cannot be what we are not, so to try and deny or denigrate what we really are will, in the long run, leave us with nothing to identify us. This will painfully mean that we are striving to be like other people and we will remain nothing but second class humans in the world.

Do we need to sacrifice everything that stands us out on the altar of some of us who believe that 'our' destinies lie away from home?

If our future generations have nothing which identifies them uniquely, they will always struggle to be like other people and they can never be natural. It is akin to what happened to African Americans but theirs was inflicted against their will whereas we seem to be unwittingly mortgaging the humanity and identities of our future generations. They are NEVER going to become Europeans. They will always have the Nigerianess in them but they will struggle when what they should be naturally has been mortgaged by their so-called fathers and mothers.

Please let us preserve our identities

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8 answers

yes we are, HOME AND ABROAD!

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I dont think the Nigerian identity is such an easy one to define. It's as complex as the nation itself. I believe that a combination of the various identities is what can be termed a Nigerian identity. Each society needs to try and protect every one of it's heritage.

The westernisation and our collective sense of subordination contributes to the situation which makes us desire foreign languages and ways of life over ours, even where these foreign languages and ways are very unsuitable to our own peculiar society

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who exactly is jealous of who?

I can imagine what your thought system is like by your belief that being a lawyer or doctor precludes anyone from being a drug user. I posit that the reason many families tend to teach their children English to the detriment of their own language is because they see a society where English is everything; a society where we have started believing that a person who speaks/writes better English is necessarily better and more intelligent than the other.

If you see families where children dont listen to their parents in Nigeria, that's not what my experience is. I think you'll find that children are more likely to disregard their parents in Europe and America than in Nigeria.

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This thread like all its 'brothers' and 'sisters' with similar lines of discussions/argument seem to be appearing in nairaland and changing its title like a chameleon changes its colour (Trade identity to foreign land, Diasporans pack poo, internet war fight - NINs vs NIDs, loose your Nigerian nationality, e.t.c.). I am rather certain that I cannot continue to engage in them except they are well conceived, rational and makes sense to me  As for me, if you are not satisfied with your work or living overseas, go home. if you are not satisfied with same in Nigeria, change base! Life is not too complicated. Hundreds of thousands of British nationals live in foreign countries such as Australia, New Zealand, Spain, Canada, e.t.c and continue to move there everyday. So what the fuss about living in another country?

Take a look at these:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/6161705.stm

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/6210358.stm.

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@ClimieNH89,

And by the way, you don't need to be in the US to lose your cultural heritage. The average Nigerian Artist today is busy trying to be an American, and the funny thing is that they are selling albums like mad. Maybe we should start by having Tu-face, Idris, Planteshun Boyz etc sing only juju music, fuji or highlife. That way, we can at least say that our charity began at home before going to the diaspora!

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It's a matter of being happy. If the Nigerian culture doesn't satisfy you, you can as well adopt another one.

This is not a matter of betraying your mother-land. haba! In this world there is something called survivor, when you are in a new land, you have to adapt to the new environment or you'll look totally isolated from everyone!

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ventriloquising:

In the 7th century, when Africans colonised Spain and Portugal and ruled them for 600 years, the Europeans became afraid and insecure because they thought we were going wipe out their heritage. The repercussion of that is the "Black Legend", mass murder and racism we're still suffering today.

When Khoikhoi and Zulu Jews who settled in Austria began to intermarry with the germanic peoples before, during and after World War I, the Germans and Hitler were terrified at the thought of losing their heritage and when they got a chance in World War II, they slaughtered hundreds of thousands of African Jews, more than 2 million "Rhineland Bastards" whom were the result of the intermarriage between these jews with German women, and millions of Europeans who allowed themselves to be converted to jews or adopted the lifestyle of jews were shipped off as slaves to concentration camps.

So was the magnitude of the punishment we recieved for trying to influence the heritage of Europeans.

They never thought one day, we'd be at the recieving end and we'd take it smiling. It's amazing. But they did it anyway.

That maga, Seun ban me sha for no reason, so I just say make I used a friend ID let my people know say it is important to protect our heritage, but Africans have always progressed by incorporating the good parts of other people's culture into our heritage and throwing away the bad. So no shaking. All join.

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True talk oh but I hope you have a bullet proof vest because your fellow Nigerians living Abroad will start attcking you now.

Take Cover, me I don run comot

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