Nigeria’s Bride Price app: reason behind debate, but is it just a commentary that is sly social days gone by?

Nigeria’s Bride Price app: reason behind debate, but is it just a commentary that is sly social days gone by?

Honey, so that your life shall be sweet. Palm oil, to lubricate life’s aches. Salt, to protect and help keep you. Kola nut, i can not keep in mind precisely, but is it perhaps perhaps not enough it is probably the most symbolically Nigerian thing, across all cultural lines?

What exactly are these? Collectively, they form element of a “bride cost” – money and gift suggestions written by a guy’s family members to a female’s upon their wedding. At school in Nigeria, during Yoruba history course, we had been told about women that attracted bride that is incredibly high, determined by their characteristics. Inversely, there have been females whoever bride costs were therefore paltry, it absolutely was an embarrassment. I do not keep in mind the gifts that are specific whatever they signify any more, but I really do understand that these classes for which we had been taught about our history had been, for contemporary budding feminists, a difficult pill to ingest.

I’m considering bride price again this week, however, as a result of an app that is new’s been doing the rounds when you look at the African corners of my internet life. Initially, I became reluctant to write about that software after all. The narrative of Africa and Africans in the united kingdom along with other Western, mostly white areas is indeed old, therefore outdated and false, so wearying, that we conserve African tales for my safer areas, places where there isn’t any empathy gap. I love referring to Nigeria without some internet complete complete stranger telling me personally to “simply get on it! ” Dealing with Africa – its good as well as its bad – from the internet wears me down. When we third-culture kids get together, occupying that center room into the Venn diagram that overlaps our parents’ countries with all the West’s, we are able to laugh about any of it. That is what this software is mostly about.

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The Bride Price app calculated that I happened to be well well worth the “Premium Babe”-ly amount of 494,500 naira that is nigerianNGN) –about ?1,816. Exactly How achieved it get to this figure? Via a few concerns, plus they are the star that is real of software. You’ve got the choice to check “for yourself” or “for the friend/enemy” – because as Nigerians, the one thing we are always conscious of, even though we can’t see or hear them, is our enemy.

Therefore, also before we clicked, I became smiling. Then arrived the true concerns: my height; my fat (choices included the very”medium” that is standard and the harder-to-decipher “Mama Ronke” – so what does that even mean? ); my leg form (“straight”, “sexy bow leg (Beyonce)” etc); my facial beauty (from “intimidating” to “complete no try”) and so forth. Each solution features a value that is monetary no kola pea nuts here – often a “discount”, 60 % if you should be unfortunate sufficient to function as the indecipherable “Mama Ronke”. The software does take time to determine the bride cost and provides a jaunty message by having a blinking green shekere (a West African drum): “Please wait – the elders are consulting. At the conclusion of the quiz”

The expression “if you do not laugh, you will cry” appears, inside your, to be produced particularly for Nigerians. The narrative that is accepted certainly one of woe, a country lurching from pillar (of calamity) to publish (of disaster) despite a reference wide range which could effortlessly function as reply to our issues. The thought of bride pricing is a screen to the past, a past that will be never glorious or edifying whenever seen via a contemporary lens.

But this application is sly – the nuance is almost certainly not noticeable to all eyes, but it is there. Under skin color – which could or might not have had an effect on bride cost into the olden days and undoubtedly things within the hierarchy of beauty today – comes five categories. “Half caste”; “Light skin”; “Dark”; “Whitenicious”; and “Lupita” (such as Nyong’o). The worth for every decreases while you get down record, beginning with +NGN50,000. The question answer and– choices simultaneously acknowledge the colour-struck manner attribute of a swathe of Nigerians, in addition to noting without fuss the number of tints we are available in obviously. There is certainly an level associated with the Lupita skin, which can be a thing that is small yet not.

There are various other markers. On teeth, a “white with gap” gets the value that is highest (my mom has expressed dismay that none of her kids inherited our grandmother’s “beautiful” diastema), while “Ronaldinho” is sold with a -NGN40,000 label. The place and citizenship questions are fine “don’t cry – laugh” examples (America happens tops in both), and a Masters is desirable, but a PhD features a penalty of -NGN100,000. Employment views gas and oil show up trumps (+NGN100,000); my journalism job has a value of just +NGN20,000. Fortunately, i will be “redeemed” by my English accent – the best – respected at +NGN45,000.

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