Last week, US comedian Kevin Hart announced that he will be performing in Egypt for the first time on 21 February 2023. As soon as the tickets went on sale, Egyptians took to social media to attack the world-famous comedian and call for the cancellation of his performance.
The calls, which accused Hart of falsifying history, came in response to previous Afrocentric comments that were allegedly made by Hart about ancient Egypt.
Although it is unclear when and where Hart made these comments, a viral hashtag was created, calling for the cancellation or boycotting of the comedian’s Cairo performance.
You spread lies about my country and my land.
You are not welcome, Kevin Hart , on the land of Egypt There is no place for thieves and liars on the land of
Egyptian civilization.#CancelKevinHartShow #الغاء_حفل_كيفن_هارت pic.twitter.com/B2mkmqef9f
— Ⲁⲥⲙⲏ سيما (@Simaah9) December 13, 2022
Created by African-American activists, Afrocentrism is a movement that promotes African culture and emphasizes its contributions to the development of Western civilization. It suggests, in particular, that ancient Egypt’s rulers and its population were black, yet that this fact was revised and ultimately wiped from Western and worldwide scholarship.
“We must teach our children the true history of black Africans when they were kings in Egypt, and not just the era of slavery that is cemented by education in America. Do you remember the time when we were kings?” is a statement that Hart is believed to have said in the past, according to Ahram Online.
From reactions stating that the actor is “not welcome in Egypt”, to others accusing him of “blackwashing” Egyptian history, the viral hashtags #الغاء_حفل_كيفن_هارت and #CancelKevinHartShow have been trending for over a week on Twitter.
Kevin you have angered all Egyptians by adopting lies and propagating false claims made by Afroceterist that falsely claims that Africans were kings of Egypt. This claim is false. Apologise or face #kevinhart_is_not_welcome_in_egypt anger and backlash. Don’t falsify history. pic.twitter.com/OsgkKYX4Yz
— مايكل منير (ن) (@MichaelMeunier) December 13, 2022
So far, Hart, whose performance will take place at the Cairo Indoor Stadium, as part of his ‘Reality Check’ world tour, has not addressed or commented on the viral hashtags or the reactions that followed his performance announcement.
In response to the viral campaign, Zahi Hawass, Egyptologist and Egypt’s former Minister of Antiquities, explained that the Africans and the Kush ruled Egypt in the 25th Dynasty, 2,000 years after the pyramids were built.
“Scientifically speaking, Africans have nothing to do with the building of the pyramids,” said Hawass.
According to Egyptian historians and Egyptologists, race is difficult to ascertain for ancient Egypt. Throughout its millennia of history, the country underwent a series of invasions by its neighbors from the West (modern day Libya), East (Levant), as well as the south (Sudan). It is only late in its history that the country was shortly headed by rulers from the Kingdom of Kush, located at the south of Egypt and northern Sudan, although it quickly lost its grasp on the territory to native Egyptian rulers.
Until today, the racial profile of ancient Egyptians remains impossible to ascertain, considering the multiple invasions and foreign communities residing in the land over the years. One study, made by the University of Tuebingen and the Max Planck Institute’s researchers, revealed that ancient Egyptians’ shared a genetic profile with Eastern Mediterranean and Anatolian populations. The study’s findings are limited as the extracted DNA was only from 151 mummies, from Middle Egypt, and from the period of 1400 BC to 400 BC.
Egyptian history spans for much longer, before and after that time period, and over a larger territory.
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