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Hilarious New Instagram Account Uses Barbies to Parody White Volunteers in Africa

Avatar • Apr 20, 2016

I once had the distinct pleasure of scrolling through my Facebook feed only to be bombarded with images from a friend’s recent trip to Kenya. Sounds innocent enough, I know, but the images went from intriguing to disturbing in 2 seconds. This Facebook friend was a white, 20-something nurse, who was volunteering in Africa to assist in some surgeries. She also spent time in an orphange, and of course, shared images of sickly babies, and children filling dirty buckets with dirty water. It made perfect sense that she would consider these Kodak moments. But it gets worse. In addition to sharing these photos, she also shared images of the surgeries they were performing while in Africa. Images of adults, out cold on the operating table, their pink flesh made public to the world.

The implication was clear: If you are black and poor, and we are doing you a favor, you wave your right to dignity.

Now this was back in 2008 before folks knew they could get fired over stuff like this, and though we aren’t Facebook friends anymore (I deleted her on the spot and still plan to tell her about herself if I ever catch her on the street), her albums are still public. The images of the surgeries have been taken down, but there are 5 albums filled with pictures of zebras, lions, and African orphans. Zoo animals, Black people, it’s all the same, right? She is the very same person for whom the“Barbie Savior” was modeled.

Using black and white Barbie dolls, the Instagram account pokes fun at the typical white volunteer who makes sure to capture every second of her “selflessness” for her IG followers.

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According to the Huffington Post, the account was created by two, self-professed former “white saviors,” only a few weeks ago.

We were never as ‘savioresque’ as Barbie Savior, but we did things back in our White Savior days that we regret,” they told The Huffington Post.

It really just started as a joke between us, a way to get some of these things off of our chest. It’s hard to pinpoint the irony at times in real life… the wildly self-centered person veiled as the self-sacrificing saint.”

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The account is spot on and hilarious. Here’s hoping that ” saviors” far and wide get the message.

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About Lisa Jean Francois

I'm a Lipstick-obsessed Journalist and Fashion Blogger. You can find me over on my blog or youtube channel swatching lippies and strutting around in 5-inch heels. I'm a also a brand coach, specializing in video marketing and digital brand development. Find me @lisaalamode.

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I walk in the way of the wolf,
I walk in the way of the wolf,
4 years ago

Some one deleted my comments, on the article about white men who profit off black women.I’m not surprised because most bglh writers or their readers are clearly obssessed with interracial dating and white people.I stated that on mainstream ‘white’ websites there is nothing on ID,but on every friggin black websites they’re are articles on how to date,marry and procreate with white people. If black people were as focused on fighting racism as they are on sleeping with and procreating with their oppressors the world be a better place for black people.Instead of building strong communities they’d rather marry into other… Read more »

Peju Ayemojuba
Peju Ayemojuba
4 years ago

I honestly respect your opinion and you’re free to say what you want. I do however think some of what you stated is a bit questionable which I would like to note. I don’t think it is fair to generalise all inter-racial relationships in that way(And I’m not in one if you’re thinking that). Of course some may have that mentality but that’s their problem not yours.You cannot really help who you like. In addition, Yes white supremacy exists and so does white privilege but again, do not assume that all white individual behave in the manner that you’re speaking… Read more »

I walk in the way of the wolf
I walk in the way of the wolf
4 years ago
Reply to  Peju Ayemojuba

Of course, I struck a chord because I spoke about black people and ID, it’s sad that a lot of you consider black empowerment to be a mentality (this is supposedly a website for black women?). Interracial relationships are not progressive and they’re not indicative of a “post-racial society”, they’ve been going on a long time, but now they are not so stigmatized,but you still have the occasional White/Asian/Metisco family disowning their relatives for marrying blacks. It saddens me how we are always welcome non-blacks into our communities but they still see us as inferior. Well, I’m pretty young as… Read more »

I walk in the way of the wolf
I walk in the way of the wolf
4 years ago
Reply to  Peju Ayemojuba

Of course, I struck a chord because I spoke about black people and ID, it’s sad that a lot of you consider black empowerment to be a mentality (this is supposedly a website for black women?) Interracial relationships are not progressive and they’re not indicative of a “post-racial society”, they’ve been going on a long time, but now they are not so stigmatized,but you still have the occasional White/Asian/Metisco family disowning their relatives for marrying blacks. It saddens me how we are always welcome non-blacks into our communities but they still see us as inferior. Well, I’m pretty young as all… Read more »

I walk in the way of the wolf
I walk in the way of the wolf
4 years ago
Reply to  Peju Ayemojuba

Of course, I struck a chord because I spoke about black people and ID, it’s sad that a lot of you consider black empowerment to be a mentality (this is supposedly a website for black women?) Interracial relationships are not progressive and they’re not indicative of a “post-racial society”, they’ve been going on a long time, but now they are not so stigmatized,but you still have the occasional White/Asian/Metisco family disowning their relatives for marrying blacks. It saddens me how we are always welcome non-blacks into our communities but they still see us as inferior. Well, I’m pretty young as all… Read more »

Naturally me
Naturally me
4 years ago

You are too young and too heavily influenced by your parents mentalities to have a clue about what you’re ranting about. Take a chill pill and finish school. Rant when you’re older and have lived a bit.

I walk in the way of the wolf
I walk in the way of the wolf
4 years ago
Reply to  Naturally me

“My parents mentalities?”. Aren’t you funny? It’s beautiful the way black people tear down and mock other black people but won’t say a damn to white people.You’re obviously older than me,so you seen more of the world than I have, my parents have endured more blatant and horrifying racism than I have but they have still managed to teach me that black people and white people are equal,although we are equal some white people and non-black poc see us an inferior.I do not consider the horrific racism older black people have faced to be a joke or forgettable, so I don’t… Read more »

I walk in the way of the wolf
I walk in the way of the wolf
4 years ago
Reply to  Naturally me

“My parents mentality”, even though my parents endured more blatant and horrorific racism than I have, they still taught me that Black people and White peple are equal, even though some White people and non-black Poc see us as inferior.I don’t see the horrific racism that older Black people have gone through as a joke or forgettable, so I don’t what the hell you mean by my parents mentality. I respect the civil rights activists, work and try to keep their memories alive.I’m college and I understand that white supremacy dominates this planet. Lose your bullsh*t self-righteous mentality then respond.Naturally… Read more »

guest
guest
4 years ago

Psst, it should be “accept” not “except”.

Chevanne
4 years ago

Oh honey, it’s a complex world and maybe you should stop lumping us into a formless group. Who we love is who we love which comes with challenges. White people have the benefit of not talking about race or racism because it doesn’t confront them, but for many, it’s part of their experience. They must address it. Black prosperity has for generations, had to be mediated by white approval of business loans, permits, land ownership, etc. Unfortunately, we can’t avoid the barriers evident in our societies, great and small. But those issues are separate from internal conflict. Our continued internal… Read more »

Chrissie
Chrissie
4 years ago

Generalizing a race of people, that’s actually racism right there!

I walk in the way of the wolf
I walk in the way of the wolf
4 years ago

Meh,left some critical comments some asshole deleted,thought this website was for empowerment of black women who are marginalises in this sexist and racist world but it’s for BW who seek white male validation saying anything abt black empowerment for both genders and they delete it.I’ll have to find a website for the real empowerment and celebration of blackness and black women.Madam noire is just as a f*cking bad every gdmn article is on how to get a whiteman and critical discussion on race relations is shut down.

BGLHRinny
BGLHRinny
4 years ago

No one is deleting your comments. I assure you. There is a moderation system set up that takes time for all comments to be reviewed.

KCee
KCee
4 years ago

What does your comment have to do with this current article??

Chevanne
4 years ago

What makes this poignant is that it’s from former saviors. “Poor porn” is a huge draw for audiences and the exploitation of pain and suffering is an arguably essential component. People are stripped of dignity, privacy and put on display. Their lives are portrayed as desolate or empty with bonus points for any level of food insecurity. I admire their method of presentation and it’s a way to start a conversation about what we are actually doing in these countries. We’re really just boosting our own egos.

Itumeleng
Itumeleng
4 years ago

I believe some white people mean well, but I have met some I have been wary of. As a Southern African it pains me to see the suffering of my people as fodder of entertainment by the privileged. I don’t care where they come from. Give my people some dignity, that’s all I ask.

Bonnie N.
Bonnie N.
4 years ago
Reply to  Itumeleng

Are you from Botswana by any chance??

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Itumeleng
Itumeleng
4 years ago

Indeed I am. How did you know?

Biss
Biss
4 years ago

Seems like a creative way to address something that seems too taboo to even bring up. I’m surprised they went there, but perhaps it’s time to pinpoint the fact that though some people are actually there to help, others are there to help themselves and its time we bring it up and address it. If you can’t follow the money (as in the donations and taxes given to these types causes) then at least follow the limelight behind which hides hypocrisy.

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