By wandia njoya…
Nuclear family is an anti-African concept.
In the 19th century, European governments used the nuclear family to justify to their own citizens why they were colonizing us. They said we Africans didn’t know what families were, and so they were colonizing us to teach us. They even taught home science to African girls to show them how to run a home, European style.
In the 20th century, the nuclear family was used to revive the attack on the black community in the US and roll back the gains of the civil rights movement. The state said that African Americans were suffering from lack of nuclear families, so as to avoid bearing responsibility for the poverty, increasing incarceration and political oppression that was affecting African American communities. The black man became both victim and enemy of America. He got incarcerated and blamed for the destruction of African American families by the US state.
In Africa, colonialism broke families by forcing them to be nuclear units, educating and employing only the man, making citizenship only male, and transferring community property to the ownership of individual men. In other words, colonialism moulded the African man in the image of the slave plantation owner, to the point of introducing the same surname with which they forced African slaves to adopt the surname of their masters.
The effect is that men became mini imperialists, and agents of the greed, pollution, defforestation and grabbing and all the land-related evil that is killing us today.
In the late 20th century, the preachers of the nuclear family in Africa became the white American evangelicals, with a lot of help from the Catholic church.
To resist the idea of the nuclear family is the beginning of freedom for Africa. We must insist that the village must raise the child. We must return to our African languages where we greet all adults as parents, all age mates as siblings and all children as our own children.
Returning to the concept of the village, or to the concept of ubuntu, would radically address many things. Land grabbing and things like pollution would be made unacceptable, because the culprits would be defying the good of the community. We would address gender inequality, because women would get support raising children, and men would be frowned upon for abandoning and impoverishing families. We would have better care for mental illness, instead of abandoning victims to the chemicals sold by pharmaceutical companies.
The village raising the child would also force the middle class, many of whom were educated by the village, to abandon their current retreat into private social services and gated communities, and would make them use their knowledge to fight for good governance and social services for EVERYBODY.
Focus on the nuclear family is a divisive ideology meant to weaken Africans’ collective force. That is why I consider CBC, with its focus on the nuclear family, an anti-African curriculum. And you have seen that the professors and middle class have refused to question CBC. They wont question, because the social privilege of their kids remains unthreatened in this new system that grossly disadvantages children from the poor and the distressed homes.
The idea of the nuclear family is the root of greed, selfishness, inequality, corruption and state dictatorship. We must reject it.