So I feel so accomplished! I have mastered a couple of different Nigerian dishes! i know how to make Puff Puff, Fried Rice, Jelloff Rice, Meat Pie, Rice & Stew, Egusi Soup, Ogbono Soup, Okra Soup, Fried Plantain aka Dodo (Easy), Suya, Akara, Moi-Moi, Yam Porridge, Pepper Soup and Im only FOURTEEN… Uh huh be jealous, lmao :)
Anonymous said: How would one write an assimilated character (i.e; someone who is heavily into American culture) without the reader assuming that they’re white?
You just make sure to note early on that they’re not White, then go about your business. And remember that even if their culture is mostly the mainstream Western culture(s) around them, there may still be aspects of their family’s culture that have an influence of their perspectives and home life. On the note, is the character’s family as assimilated as they are? Do family member(s) engage in certain non-western holidays, speak a second language, decorate with some of their familial culture’s art, listen to their music, eat their foods?
I can say growing up, my home life with my father (Nigerian) was pretty Western Neutral to the Midwest suburban life. Aside from AAVE, I don’t speak a second language; my dad did, and i’d sometimes overheard him speaking with family on the phone, but otherwise even he didn’t speak it much as he’d moved when he was pretty young and was used to speaking English.
We didn’t engage in any special holidays or practices outside of the “American” ones (Easter, Halloween, Christmas etc) but my dad sometimes cooked Nigerian dishes, maybe 2-5 times every few months, so not very often.
I also have some trinkets, like coin purses and dresses sent to me from family in Nigeria from when I was a child. We also had several Nigerian statues as decor in the living room.
All the above is just one example of how non-western culture might play (or not play) a role with a character who is more involved the dominant culture lifestyle.
Also, the character still might have a surname related to their heritage though if the family is more westernized, I can imagine their first name would be more western too. (I happen to have a “Western” first name and Nigerian middle and last name)
Point being; there might be little cultural aspects that still affect the character or their family, even if they’re not wholly engaged in them or they aren’t actually relevant to the plot.
The description tag includes several tips on ways to express that a character isn’t White so take a look there. Here are some posts that may be helpful.
Imagine Ransom cooking Nigerian dishes like jollof rice in the Haus and everyone loves the taste of it, the spices as well as the rich flavor. Imagine Ransom speaking in native language whenever he speaks to his parents on the phone (depending on which tribe he belongs from, the language will be different! A language he might speak could be Igbo), his accent taking a slight Nigerian accent. (my voice does that whenever I’m surrounded by family, it’s really weird.)