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Taking negative feedback can be daunting and frustrating for both the person giving it and the person receiving it. Sometimes negative feedback is “on point” and other times it is way off base. I have received feedback about the size of my breast in an academic setting. I was annoyed and aghast at those comments. I thought what does that have to do with anything? Over the years I learned a few pearls which have helped me approach the feedback process with less angst.
I hope these pearls help you deal with your next feedback session.
I was recently introduced to some of Seth Godin’s work. If you have never heard of him, seriously you need to google him. One of the most thought-provoking ideas he discusses is making a commitment to share a new idea with your community every day as a gift to yourself and others. For him, that meant writing a blog every single day which he has done since 2002. He takes the idea of consistency to a new level. I have always considered myself a pretty consistent person but once I read his work. I felt compelled to “level up”.
Sometimes I question the value of my voice, my contribution or even the necessity of sharing “commonsense knowledge” which everyone else knows or should know. Other times, I question the value of doing “unproductive” work. Work without an easily calculated return on investment. What really is the value of sharing my most personal thoughts with a bunch of strangers and not-so-strangers online? Does it make a difference? Who cares? Seth Godin eloquently verbalizes what I have been stammeringly trying to articulate for years. The reason why we write and share and contribute is that we are really giving a gift to ourselves, our communities, our future. Nothing excites me more than gift giving especially when the person you are giving something to may not be able to return that favor right now or maybe ever. For me, that is when joy is the most sincere and pure. This new perspective allowed me to return back to my writing with renewed vigor. The idea that I can give a gift every single day and re-experience that joy of giving every single day is enough. Enough to keep me coming back to play, create, write, shape and dream and live narrative that far exceeds my wildest dreams.
High blood pressure can ruin your life and tear families apart:
After many bronze artefacts were stolen from places such as the Benin Kingdom in what is now southern Nigeria and displayed in European museums such as the Ethnological Museum in Berlin and the British Museum, there is an ongoing plan to return them to where they were stolen from.
The Ethnological Museum in Berlin has the largest collection of art from the Benin Kingdom, followed by the British Museum. These collections were stolen during the reign of the Benin King Oba Ovọnramwẹn Nọgbaisi when the British burned down the Benin Kingdom, killed its inhabitants and looted the palace of the Oba of Benin.
Early last year, one of the stolen artifacts, a bronze cockerel known as Okukor, that stood in the dining hall of Cambridge University was voted by the students under the Jesus College Student Union, to be removed and returned to Nigeria, from whence it was stolen. The bronze cockerel was one of the over 3,000bronze statues looted by the British during the Benin Punitive Expedition in 1897.
Dr Michael Barrett, a senior curator at Stockholm’s Världskulturmuseet told the Guardian that returning the stolen artefacts is a way “this generation of curators . . . finds ways towards reconciliation.”
One of the major issues raised had to do with security arrangements and insurance costs, aside from the legal framework that would be established to guarantee that the artefacts aren’t seized in Nigeria.
The negotiation of stolen properties from Africa is one of the things African countries suffer despite the negative effects of colonialism. Sarah Baartman, whose body parts were exhibited in France at the Museum of Man for more than half a century only just had her remains returned to South Africa in 2002 where she was given a proper burial. These vestiges of colonialism are a testament to the savageness of the Europeans and a testimony to their attitude towards the continent and its inhabitants.
Considering the statements by Emmanuel Macron stating that Africa’s problem is civilisation, and also the depiction of African culture and civilisation to be primitive, it is contradictory that such artefacts of such quality which testify otherwise are still being kept in western and European museums.
At a time when the world is redefining its ethical stance on slave owners, and pulling down statues of colonial masters, this is the best time to also return artefacts, and stolen wealth taken away from Africa and carted to various colonial empires
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