Nothing could prepare me for America, writes Ikhide Ikheloa
The Nigerian writer Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie has said that she did not realize she was black until she came to America. That is a pretty dramatic way of telling the truth. When I came to Oxford, Mississippi from Nigeria in the early 80’s to attend the University of Mississippi (OLEMISS), I knew I was black—but my notion of blackness was very different from what it meant to be black in America, certainly in OLEMISS. Come to think of it, I had no idea what I was doing when I accepted a place at OLEMISS in 1982. I came to a place that seemed hostile to black folks, and by the time I realized what I had done, I was too broke to leave the place. I was miserable.
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