Saturday, November 22, 2008

Africa is Not a Country

Just recently, I took my son and his best buddy to watch Madagascar Escape 2 Africa. It seems there are quite a number of folks in America who think Africa is a country. Gloria, the curvaceous hippo is in contention with Sarah Palin for the Mama Shujaa 2008 Seriously Uninformed Character Award.

Picture this scene: Moto Moto, the massive watering-hole womanizer swaggers over to Gloria as she lounges on a cool rock somewhere in Africa, sipping a Martini. L.U.V. is on his mind and with a name like Moto Moto you’d expect more than the thought-terminating platitudes that issue from his bulbous lips. You learn very quickly that he is all mass, no substance.

Miss Thing on the other hand has got it going on. She knows the meaning of his name: Moto Moto means Hot Hot in “African!” Uh, Africa is not a country, Missy. It is a vast continent made up of 53 countries with an estimated 2000 languages spoken.
DreamWorks and its writers should take note. Going forward, we want far more inspiring and relevant material when portraying Africa. It turns out that there are elementary schools that have whole lesson plans on teaching about Africa. I can’t wait for our school district to follow suit, but I am not holding my breath. As parents, we work every day to shatter stereotypes and educate our children about the truth of their heritage.

Overall, the movie was enjoyably animated and the boys (10 and 11) said they liked it; although, I wondered about their coughing bouts during the Gloria – Moto Moto scenes. Enjoy the weekend!

6 comments:

  1. Love the blog!:-) I am enjoying the Kswahili vocabulary lessons. I hope I spelled that correctly. Keep them coming. I read every one.:-)

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  2. Thanks Starsew! You'll be alright my love - it's Kiswahili.

    I hope you keep a vocab notebook.

    I am going to be conducting a conTEST sometime...!

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  3. LOL!!!!!!!!! I hear that! Tell is Mama Shujjaa. It would help, though, if they had someone on the staff that actually cared enough to ask the question, so they won't be embarrassed later on. Wishful thinking...

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  4. Shukuru Mama Shujaa. (Did I use Shukuru correctly)

    I have my notebook!

    This is so cool!

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  5. What an interesting tidbit. To think that a group of professional writers got it twisted...wow. I love your blog!

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  6. Just made the same remark on my blog... Didn't see the movie but saw an interview of the actors and again, Africa was a country ?? Gloups !!

    Made a post about it in my French blog and some text of your article has been translated into French in my article, just to show that we do care !!

    Africa is not a country...

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