Black and Abroad, a travel company catering to modern black travelers, takes the racist and derogatory phrase “Go back to Africa” and gives it a new, positive twist for a pan-African tourism campaign.
The campaign, by FCB/Six, starts off by showing some hate-fueled Twitter posts using the phrase, but then reframes them against words and images showing the beauty and diversity of African countries.
“One of the campaign’s goals is to effectively strip the perceived power away from those who use the phrase ‘Go back to Africa’ with derogatory intent,” says Eric Martin, co-founder of Black & Abroad, in a statement. “If we can strip the expression of its impact, then we can debunk the age-old narrative that Africa is a desolate, disease-ridden wasteland undeserving of our time and travels.”
The campaign, which includes ads on Twitter, YouTube and digital OOH, drives viewers to a website at GoBacktoAfrica.com. Media agency Initiative Media helped FCB/Six to identify and reach African Americans who are interested in travel, and the campaign highlights each one of Africa’s 54 countries then invites them to “See themselves there.”
“We’re interested in showing a more diverse picture of Africa than you see in traditional tourism campaigns,” adds Eric Martin. “Yes, there are zebras in Africa, and zebras are great. But there are also amazing art galleries, and restaurants, and beaches, and other experiences, many of which may be more relevant to African American tourists than some other groups.”