The story of an African children’s book that explains the science of skin colour
Nina Jablonski: One of the things that most impressed me, once we were talking, was your ability to express the everyday wear-and-tear of skin colour and colour-based racism.
Sindiwe Magona: Racism in South Africa was a way of life as it was sanctioned. Social stratification, according to skin, was reinforced by apartheid laws that in turn embedded and entrenched poverty and lack of mobility for the oppressed. The darker the skin colour, the less legal protection accorded, to the extent of denial of citizenship. Just as skin colour is inescapable, so was poverty inescapable. This created and reinforced a deep-seated sense of inferiority in most black people while most white people suffered the reverse and felt superior.