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How Black Panther Made Me Question Where My Home Is

Wakanda, though a fictional place, had tangible resonances for me. In the midst of the excitement, I felt a great sense of reflection: (the gorgeous) Michael B. Jordan’s anti-villain character opened up a Pandora's box of the complexities that come with growing up as a diasporan.

As a Black British young woman, whose roots lie across the Caribbean, I really empathised with Killmonger’s struggle: I could personally identify with the yearning to connect - or reconnect - with a place that feels so much a part of you, yet, in so many ways, never has been a part of your life. After some introspection, I realised that is probably one of the reasons that I so dread the question, “where are you from?” It’s usually asked innocently, without probing intentions - but, there’s a self-imposed pressure, that wherever I say first is where I most identify with, or most belong.

Caribbean culture is stitched into the fabric of my identity. From my cravings for ackee and saltfish, to my dancehall obsession and even the patois-infused motivation that drives me - queue my nan saying, “if yuh wan good, yuh nose haffi run” [you have to work hard to achieve good things]. But, having only been to the Caribbean once in my life, there are so many elements of unfamiliarity to this part of me - there is no street in St Vincent, Jamaica or Barbados that feels like home, despite the stories that my dad and my maternal nan and grandad have told me about their respective homes.