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‘My tribe is a quest to a land that was lost to us and its name is dignity’: Riz Ahmed raps his soul out, wins hearts online

A video featuring the British actor and rapper’s performance has gone viral on social media.

riz ahmed raps where you are from, where you are from, riz ahmed, racism, rap, indian expressThe song also featured in the British actor and rapper’s concept album ‘The Long Goodbye’ centred around the UK’s relationship with South Asians and British Asians.

Raising pertinent questions about the culture of othering and racism against ethnic minorities, Riz Ahmed eloquently sang his soul out three years ago and the video featuring his performance has gone viral on social media. The song also featured in the British actor and rapper’s concept album ‘The Long Goodbye’ centred around the UK’s relationship with South Asians and British Asians.

In the clip, Ahmed is heard singing the thought-provoking lyrics. He begins with the question British ethnic minorities often face, “They ever ask you ‘Where you from?’ Like, ‘really really from?’.” Expressing his thought about the country he was born in, he adds, “Britain’s where I’m born and I love a cup of tea and that But tea ain’t from Britain, it’s from where my DNA is at And where my genes are from.”

However, revealing the pain of feeling a sense of belonging, he sings, “Skinheads meant I never really liked the British flag and I only got the shits when I went back to Pak and my ancestors’ Indian but India was not for us.”

He also voices his identity crisis. “Maybe I’m from everywhere and nowhere No man’s land, between the trenches,” he sings. Expressing a sentiment shared by many, he adds, “My tribe is a quest to a land that was lost to us and its name is dignity so where I’m from is not your problem bruv.”

Ahmed is renowned for his work in independent films such as The Road to Guantanamo (2006), Shifty (2008) and Four Lions (2010). He is a winner of an Emmy and also has a Golden Globe and three British Independent Film Awards in his kitty.

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Several users were deeply moved by Ahmed’s words. A user commented, “I am at the mosh pit and at the mosque – this is next level Shakespeare.” Another user wrote, “I’ve never seen it before today. Exceptional wordplay.” A third user commented, “Riz with that !!! on identity and colonialism. His movies and music carry this fire too.”

First published on: 02-12-2022 at 12:16 IST
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