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Queen Elizabeth’s Crown Not For Her – Uju Anya
Nigeria-born American professor, Uju Anya, has made more comments on late Queen Elizabeth II of England, saying she was unapologetic and would stand by her words.
Anya, whose comments on Queen Elizabeth had gotten reactions across the world, further defended her comments, questioning how the Queen’s crown was gotten in the first place. She alleged that the crown was not her own but “plundered from the lands they exploited and extracted.”
She said this in an interview with foreign-based news platform, The CUT.
Anya said, “Queen Elizabeth was representative of the cult of white womanhood. There’s this notion that she was this little-old-lady grandma type with her little hats and her purses and little dogs and everything — as if she inhabited this place or this space in the imaginary, this public image, as someone who didn’t have a hand in the bloodshed of her Crown. How did she have that Crown? Even the crowns she wears are looted, and plundered from the lands they exploited and extracted from. The entire treasury is a legacy of thievery that was achieved by murder, by enslavement, and it didn’t stop after independence.”
Speaking on what the Twitter reactions she got after her comment was like for her, she said she had even been locked out of Twitter.
“I’m trying to do okay. I haven’t been on Twitter because I’m locked out, but the hate is coming into my email inbox. People are saying, ‘Oh, I don’t know what you’re on about because the queen oversaw the independence of Nigeria and Trinidad.’ That’s meaningless. They were still Commonwealth nations. They have independence in a figurehead way, while Britain installed puppet leaders that bowed to the queen.
“Even the name Nigeria is from the British. They created this fiction of a country by just arbitrarily drawing lines around territories and saying, ‘Okay, this belongs to the British; this is what we’re going to call it,” and joining independent nations who had nothing to do with each other, didn’t speak each other’s language. And also electing certain groups they favored to be the rulers. This is the history of the monarchy, and the queen was the head of the monarchy. Whether she was involved in day-to-day decisions or not, she existed because of those decisions. She never once opened her mouth to say sorry for the role of her government in the slaughter of three million civilians,” she told The Cut.
Her position has generated mixed reactions, with many hailing her while others said she went too far.
The unapologetic American professor, however, maintained that slavery and colonialism was not abstract to her, but caused direct pain to her.
“Coloniser is not an abstract term for me. It’s not just something I read about in history books or a word I throw around. It’s something that has directly affected my life and continues to through this day. It is deeply offensive for anyone to presume to tell me that I have to cry over the death of somebody who killed my people, or I have to be respectful in their passing. For what? Who are they to me except a violent oppressor?” She said.
She also said she did not wish the queen death but only wanted her to feel what others felt.
“In my tweet, I did not wish her death. I did not tell anyone to kill her. I said nothing except wishing her the pain in death that she caused for millions of people. There’s not going to be any apology from me. I stand by what I said. As a direct recipient of her governance and as the child of colonial subjects, I reserve the right to say what this woman’s life and monarchy and the history of the British monarchy as a whole means to me.
“Speak no ill of the dead’ is a weapon that’s levelled against the oppressed to silence them, to lionise oppressors, and to sanitise their history. What respect am I supposed to have for her, for her family? “Oh, well, her family is mourning her. My family is mourning as well,” Anya said.
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