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Being Samra

Falafel in my head is the only english category on this blog. It´s a critical, yet love filled, feminine voice from a woman who has egyptian roots and is viennese by living.

"Samra" means dark skinned Girl/woman in Arabic. As an Egyptian Girl- no matter where you grow up- you will be taught that being light skinned is beautiful and being "samra" is ugly. You will be taught, that your naturally curled hair needs to be straighten, because otherwise it looks too messy and girls with messy hair are not beautiful. You will be brainwashed, that your dark eyes are boring, because blue/green/hazel eyes have the ability to amaze people and dark eyes simply don't. And you will believe all that. You will believe it, because it comes from relatives and an entire society, that wants you to look like a blond american dream that somehow came true in arabic roots. And it´s kind of weird, because so many famous people sang about the "samra" Girl, her dark eyes, her curled hair and how it flies in harmony with the wind. So how come we know these songs by heart, but don´t actually think about the meaning and the message behind them? We lighten and straihgten our hair till we smell it burn, change the colours of our eyes with contact lenses, which kind of looks good at first, but is obviously fake. We even buy those creams which are supposed to lighten our skin colour. While white people go on vacation to actually get a tan, your relatives will make fun of you, if you got one - especially if you get one before a special occasion, like a wedding for example. We do all that to hide what we are and especially in the country we are from, beacuse we want to be special. Because we seek love and acceptance. Who doesn't? The war of individuallity is on and we all are kinda part of it, even without knowing it. We didn't actually sign up for it, it is hunting us. Thinking over And it goes like that. For ages. Then at some point in our lives, we stop & start thinking about it. We don't need to change our colours. We just need to think over and i´m glad, that the majority of my generation is doing so. Once you learn to embrace yourself and the things you have been taught are "ugly", you will doscover: There is no such thing as "ugly". People invented that to make you feel less worthy and you aren´t. No one is.

Fotocredit: Hibat U. Kelifi

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