Today, I figure we venture into a little bit of controversy regarding the word NAPPY. I’ve posted a video of Francesca asking the question; is the word NAPPY an insult – why or why not? I don’t know what your answer is to that question, but I can tell you mine, then you let me know whether you agree or disagree with me in the comment section below.
According to urbandictionary.com, “Nappy: Tightly coiled / curled unaltered hair. Coiled hair in its natural state as found on people of African descent who do not chemically alter their hair texture.”
There are other related words as well like: ugly, diaper, ho, gross, nigga, black, kinky, curly, nap etc… You see where I’m going with that, right. There are many different meaning associates with that word.
Should you feel insulted when someone (particularly someone who’s from a different racial background) use it? Well, that all depends on who you’re talking to, how close you are with that person in terms of friendship, and the subtext of the conversation.
In my opinion, the word Nappy is just like any other words in the English language. Anyone should feel free to use whatever word they want. That doesn’t mean there aren’t real consequences as a result for your used of such word. For example, anyone can run through an airport screaming bomb, but there are severe consequences to pay for that action.
Now I don’t speak for all African American. Quite honestly, I don’t know how most of us feel about the used this word. I suppose it’s a mix bag. Historically, the term was used in a derogatory manner as a put down to describe people of African descent. From that historical context, should we be insulted or change it to something positive? By taking proprietorship of the word is that how we claim power over it.
I’m not a psychoanalyst so I don’t know the answer to that, nor am I here to tell anyone how they should feel about a word. What I do know is this, we do have the power to not let a “word” defined us. This power comes from knowing who we are. I will say this, if you find it an insult then you really don’t know yourself; because if you knew, you would know that, you are more than a silly word.