Masterpiece is one of Kenya’s most recent celebrities to crossdress or change their gender either using makeup, technology (filters) and really just wearing actual dresses. Bahati would be the next example to come to mind.
It has to make you wonder why Kenyan celebrities are doing this nonsense. Because at the end of the day, it serves no real purpose or entertainment value… Or does it?
An argument can be made that these weird challenges actually allow Kenyan celebrities such as Masterpiece to live their truth if only momentarily. These challenges also serve to entertain small-minded Kenyans bored to death in their Coronavirus self-quarantine.
While it is true that a recent trend saw Kenyans use apps to do gender swaps, today’s focus is on celebrities -especially gospel artists- who elect to put on women’s clothes.
And the reason for this focus is the stark contrast from American celebrities who vehemently decry being made to wear female clothes for
shits and giggles at their expense and the expense of African American culture. The contrast between why Masterpiece and Bahati chose to wear dresses vs how your favourite actors and comics feel about being asked to wear dresses is interesting.
And Ringtone seems to agree. You see, there is a reason why African Americans refuse to look at the ask to wear female clothes and get made up fondly. It is because it is linked to racial humiliation and emasculation of their strongest men.
The trend of black actors and entertainers wearing dresses is a thing that was made not only powerful but brought to the forefront of black collective awareness by guys like Tyler Perry with his Madea bit. But make no mistakes about it, this trend goes back to the minstrel shows.
So why would Masterpiece and Bahati decide to rock dresses and act effeminate? One thing that marks the difference between Kenya and America when it comes to wearing dresses for entertainment is the racial issues that we haven’t really experienced.
However, perhaps this is the only way both lads can truly embrace who they are. Given how Kenya is conservative about trans issues, this might be the closest they get to embracing themselves and if that is the case, we shouldn’t judge them but infact encourage them to be their true selves.
August 16, 2022
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