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Afrophobia, Afroscepticism, or Anti-African sentiment is prejudice, hostility, discrimination, or racism towards people and cultures of Africa and the African diaspora.[1]

Prejudice against Africans and people of African descent has a long history, dating back to the Atlantic slave trade.[citation needed] In the United States, it was manifested in the form of Jim Crow laws and segregated housing, schools, and public facilities.[citation needed] In South Africa, it was manifested in the form of the apartheid system.[citation needed]

In recent years, there has been a rise in Afrophobic hate speech and violence in Europe and the United States.[citation needed] This has been attributed to a number of factors, including the growth of the African diaspora in these regions, the increase in refugees and migrants from Africa, and the rise of far-right and populist political parties.[citation needed]

In October 2017, the United Nations General Assembly held a high-level meeting on combating Afrophobia, with a view to adopting a resolution to address the issue.[citation needed]


Primarily a cultural phenomenon, Afrophobia pertains to the various traditions and peoples of Africa, irrespective of racial origin.[2] As such, Afrophobia is distinct from the historical racial phenomenon of negrophobia, which is specifically based on contempt for negro peoples.[3] The opposite of Afrophobia is Afrophilia, which is a love for all things pertaining to Africa.[2]

By location

It has been observed that writing and terminology about racism, including about Afrophobia, has been somewhat centered on the US.[citation needed] In 2016, "Afrophobia" has been used as a term for racism against darker-skinned persons in China. In such usage, that is an inexact term because the racism is directed against darker-skinned persons from anywhere, without regard to any connection to Africa. Conversely, Chinese views for lighter-than-average skin are more positive, as is reflected in advertising.[4]


The terms "Afrophobia" and "Afroscepticism" are similar to Europhobia and Euroscepticism and can refer to three different ideas:[citation needed]

  1. Afrophobia, or Anti-African sentiment, is a perceived fear and hatred of the cultures and peoples of Africa, as well as the African diaspora, which is also a social struggle about who has the right to be cared for by the state and society and a fight for the collective balance of rights and economic resource allocation by the modern state.
  2. Hard Afroscepticism is a principled opposition to African integration and therefore can be seen in groups that think that their countries should not be part of it or whose policies towards the integration are tantamount to being opposed to the whole project of African integration, as it is currently conceived and/or projected to be.
  3. Soft Afroscepticism does not have a principled objection to African integration but has concerns on one or a number of policy areas, which lead to the expression of qualified and justified opposition to the integration, or there is a sense that national rights and interests are currently at odds with the integration's trajectory.


To overcome any perceived "Afrophobia", writer Langston Hughes suggested that European Americans must achieve peace of mind and accommodate the uninhibited emotionality of African Americans.[citation needed] Author James Baldwin similarly recommended that White Americans could quash any "Afrophobia" on their part by getting in touch with their repressed feelings, empathizing to overcome their "emotionally stunted" lives, and thereby overcome any dislike or fear of African Americans.[5]

In 2016, Tess Asplund made a viral protest against Neo-Nazism as part of her activism against Afrophobia.[6]

In academia

Some Afrophobic sentiments are based on the belief that Africans are unsophisticated. Such perceptions include the belief that Africans lack a history of civilization, and visual imagery of such stereotypes perpetuate the notion that Africans still live in mud huts and carry spears, along with other notions that indicate their primitiveness.[7][8]

Afrophobia in academia may also occur through by oversight with regards to lacking deconstruction in mediums such as African art forms, omitting historical African polities in world cartography, or promoting a eurocentric viewpoint by ignoring historic African contributions to world civilization.[9]

See also


  1. ^ Kivuto Ndeti; Kenneth R. Gay; Gerard Bennaars (1992). The second scramble for Africa: a response & a critical analysis of the challenges facing contempory [sic] sub-Saharan Africa. Professors World Peace Academy. p. 127. ISBN 9966835733. Retrieved 10 December 2015.
  2. ^ a b Cite error: The named reference Pwpa was invoked but never defined (see the help page).
  3. ^ The Congregational Review, Volume 2. J.M. Whittemore. 1862. p. 629. Retrieved 10 December 2015.
  4. ^ Roberto Castillo (August 12, 2016). "Claims of "China's Afrophobia" show we need new ways to think about race and racism". (posted originally at The Conversation, with the title Of washing powder, Afrophobia and racism in China, August 11, 2016)
  5. ^ Washington, Robert E. (2001). The Ideologies of African American Literature. Rowman & Littlefield. p. 272. ISBN 9780742509504.
  6. ^ Crouch, David (2016-05-04). "Woman who defied 300 neo-Nazis at Swedish rally speaks of anger". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 2016-12-08.
  7. ^ Mays, Vickie M. (1985). "The Black American and psychotherapy: The dilemma". Psychotherapy: Theory, Research, Practice, Training. 22 (2S): 379–388. doi:10.1037/h0085518.
  8. ^ Marongwe, Ngonidzashe; Mawere, Munyaradzi (2016). "Violence, Identity and Politics of Belonging: The April 2015 Afrophobic Attacks in South Africa and the Emergence of Some Discourses". In Munyaradzi, Mawere; Ngonidzashe, Marongwe (eds.). Violence, Politics and Conflict Management in Africa: Envisioning Transformation, Peace and Unity in the Twenty-First Century. Langaa RPCIG. pp. 89–116. ISBN 978-9956-763-54-2.
  9. ^ Skinner, Ryan Thomas (24 April 2018). "Walking, talking, remembering: an Afro-Swedish critique of being-in-the-world". African and Black Diaspora. 12 (1): 1–19. doi:10.1080/17528631.2018.1467747. S2CID 149746823.