a) There are over 520 languages spoken in Nigeria. The most commonly spoken language of Nigeria, English, the former colonial language, was chosen due to the contrast of cultural and linguistics forced through drawn borders facilitated under the Berlin Conference. Communication in the English language is much more popular in the country’s urban communities than it is in the rural areas due to colonization.
b) The American roommate’s story was incomplete because she only had one picture of how all Africans were, she thought they were bad at English, could not use the stove, listened to tribal music and were very poor. The balanced view is in a middle-class family, her father was a professor and her mother was an administrator. She had spoken English her whole life and had a pretty “normal” life.
c) What she meant by the phrase: “her default position toward me, as an African?” is that she has in mind what all Africans are like. People who have never been there had through stories or media felt sorry for them.People are very prejudice when it comes to Africans. Why American people have this view of Africans is through media, books, and movies, showing how poor they are in comparison. They make a view without even experiencing Africa itself.
d) What she means is that stories can be used in both a positive and negative way; that you can either stop the prejudice that was created by them, or you can create even stronger issues. All of that depends on how you tell and interpret these stories.
e) Yes, because when people think of volunteering, they think that they are the white blue eyed strong rich saviors that can solve their problem easily. But without knowledge and training to be volunteers, you just end up taking pictures to show your own wonderfulness. Nigerians are not helpless and when other people just travel there to take pictures of themselves, they are just making themselves into tourists, actually not doing a difference.