Traditional wear: Some argue that the #kanzuchallenge is not for women

Welcome to Reginahsrunway where we believe that “well behaved women seldom make history.” If you have not been Backstage, we are starting a #kanzuchallenge. Looking forward to those submissions. Here is my kanzu challenge.

It is true that a kanzu s a very respectable clothing in our culture. I would approach a man in a kanzu differently than one who is not. You are wearing a kanzu, you have to carry yourself with respect and you should be treated with respect. Goes the same for the gomesi but because of gender inequality, I have seen men wear gomesis especially for comedy. I am not wearing a kanzu for comedy. I am wearing a kanzu because I am tired of the way my culture silences women. Did you know that the Ugandan government made mini skirts illegal?  Moreover, back in the day, women were not allowed to eat chicken. Let me get this straight, I cook the chicken and I’m not allowed to eat it because my culture says so? Yeah right!!

Photos taken by PSPHOTOGRAPHY

Most cultures value boys more than girls and the Ugandan culture is not any different. I’m blessed that those who raised me never silenced my smart mouth but educated it instead. I’m lucky to have been raised between two cultures that are completely different from each other. Although that made my teens more difficult than they should have been, I like the woman I am becoming.The power of diversity is that I was able to take the best of both cultures.

In case my mother is reading this and wondering where she went wrong, I would like to say that I’m just using the voice that you gave to me.  You raised me to be a strong woman and stand up for what  believe in. So despite the fact that the Ugandan culture might have a problem with a woman in a kanzu, I find it rather empowering.
If you are not familiar with the kanzu, you would find nothing wrong  with me wearing it but somewhere, there are people who might find this very disrespectful to the kanzu. I believe that a woman can do what a man can do. How many stories have you heard of men drinking away their salaries leaving the women to figure out. My father did not drink away his salary but my mother had to figure out how to take care of 6 children. She raised us and now her last born has a Masters degree. If we are going to bring gender into the kanzu then I would like debate that my mother has earned the right to wear a kanzu but she is not the type of woman who will go against tradition so her smart mouthed daughter will wear one on her behalf.(Although she probably would rather if I didn't )  

You are not supposed to wear jeans with a kanzu but  did since I have no business wearing a kanzu in the first place. I saw someone wearing a gomesi with a slit and I was very offended. Togikwatako.

I love the Ugandan culture. It is a big part of who I am. Knowing how strong Ugandan women are and how they step up to raise their families when the men are out there doing God knows what, I think it is time that we talk about how we treat women in our culture. If you have a problem with me wearing a kanzu but you have no problem with single mothers raising families because the fathers were negligent then you are part of the problem.

You are welcome to come Backstage and participate in the #kanzuchallenge. The #kanzuchallenge is gender neutral. Your thoughts are welcome. Thank you for walking on Reginahsrunway. What are some traditions in your culture that you can do without?

With love


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