It is dehumanising to identify people in terms of colour. Stereotyping and discrimination come
with racial identification. Black identity has been expressed in different forms over the centuries.
For a long period black identity was a constructed identity assigned to black people through a
white-dominated matrix. After the end of slavery, efforts were made to reconstruct black identity.
This developed into two divergent lines: one resulting in an illusionary identity as identified by
Frantz Fanon and a second line of thought of a continued search for a true authentic black
identity as explicated by the Cameroon-born philosopher Achilles Mbembe. This process of
creating a new authentic black identity is still ongoing and viewed by some as a pessimistic futile
attempt. An example of the ongoing attempt for establishing an authentic black identity is
illustrated by the movie Black Panther, which attempts to portray a different side of being black.
This research is part of the
research project, ‘Religion,
Theology and Education’,
directed by Prof. Dr Jaco
Beyers, Programme Manager:
Biblical and Religious Studies
and member of the
Department of Science of
Religion and Missiology,
Faculty of Theology and
Religion, University of