What do you think of when you hear the word AFRICA?
Do you think of safaris? And villages?
You might think of drums and dancing. Or do you think of something else?
These are stereotypes of Africa, which means they are a conventional, over-simplified image or impression of the country.
When I found out I was coming to Australia for two weeks, I was so excited. Australia’s completely the other side of the world to my home in Birmingham. I fantasised about what it would be like: kangaroos hopping round, koalas on every corner, barbecues every night. It would be so different to what I’m used to.
But when I got here, the first thing that struck me was how similar everything was. Getting the bus from the airport, I noticed they drive on the same side of the road as us. When I got to the bus station, the first shop I saw was a WH Smiths. In fact, lots of the shops are the same: Specsavers, Zara, Laura Ashley, Vodafone, Starbucks, McDonald’s, KFC. The first night I was here, I was truly adventurous and had tea at Nandos (although it wasn’t as nice as the ones in the UK and they didn’t have my favourite Wild Garlic and Herb sauce) and then went back to the hotel and watched Homes Under the Hammer, Time Team and Coronation Street.
A lot of adults are very critical of the fans of 1D or Zoella, thinking they are silly for getting so excited, and for screaming and shouting. But did you know that fandoms have existed for a very long time? They’ve not always been called fandoms; that is a fairly recent development, but they are nothing new.