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Mom!! Dad!!…………WHAT IS IN MY NAME?

Ever stop to think about the meaning of your name? Or why in the world someone would name their child like

ALIAUNE DAMALA BADARA THIAM popular known as Akon.

Well I have!!

I believe that a person’s name is the first step in finding

themselves and their identity. For example my name

LeShante which means, THE PLACE OF STONES, clearly indicates

that I’m a strong person.

During the pre- colonialism time every single name had a meaning, whether it means “first son born, the strong one” it just had a meaning. All of this ended during slavery. People were named by their masters and they themselves didn’t care if that name holds a meaning or not, what they cared about is the fact that, that slave knows his name, like the show Roots. What the overseer failed to understand is that KUNTA is the only thing he had to remind him of his identity. This is like forcing a foreigner who just became an Icelandic citizen to choose a new name in order to be a full icicle. This kind of treatment was the reason why the term “nickname” came about. The slaves would give their new born child an African name, which was only known to the slaves. That’s why we may know someone for years by the name “sunshine” not knowing that, that name is not the person`s real name.

Don’t believe this? Research it!!


Alleyne, M. (2003) The Role of Africa in the Construction of Identities in the
Caribbean. In G. Collier & U. Fleischmann (Eds), A Pepper-Pot of Cultures:
Aspects of Creolization in the Caribbean (pp. 29—42). Amsterdam & New
York: Rodopi.

Babynology. Retrieved February 20, 2007  http://www.babynology.com/otherorigins-shante-f22.html

Haley, A.Retrieved February 20, 2012 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H_A2o8ICcIQ

stpie (2009, March 5).what’s in a name?.Retrieved February 21, 2012, from