READ: "Blackass" by A. Igoni Barrett
In a Kafkaesque twist, Furo Wariboko wakes up to discover he's been transformed into a white man, complete with freckles, red hair and green eyes. As he navigates Lagos, Nigeria as an oyibo (a.k.a. a white man), he's forced to confront who he is and who he was. Barrett's satirical novel is just as heartfelt as it is humorous as it delves into the complexity of identity, race and class in Nigeria's largest city.
WATCH: "Trading Places" directed by John Landis
When Billy Ray Valentine, a clever con artist played by Eddie Murphy, and Louis Winthorpe III, a wealthy commodities broker played by Dan Aykroyd, swap lives they experience firsthand how the other half lives. While Billy Ray Valentine's transformation in "Trading Places" isn't quite as literal as Furo Wariboko's in "Blackass," it is just as thought-provoking (and hilarious). "Trading Places" treats the topics of race and class with a heavy dose of heart and humor in much the same way that "Blackass" does.
Stream "Trading Places" on Hulu.
LISTEN: Nigeria Top 50
In "Blackass," Furo contemplates the popularity of radio DJs. While sitting in gridlock traffic, "Furo began to think that for the millions of commuters who spent hour after hour and day after day in Lagos traffic with only their car radios for company, these feigned accents and invented personalities become as dear as confidantes."
Listen to the songs currently dominating the airwaves in Nigeria on this Spotify playlist. (I'm currently listening to P-Square's "Away" and Korede Bello's "Do Like That" on repeat).