'My heritage, my inheritance' is the new fashion film by South African designer: Laduma Ngxokolo - a Xhosa man from the Mpondo Clan whose knitwear fashion line is inspired by the Xhosa ritual/culture and heritage of circumcision.
Laduma Ngoxokolo's fashion film offers a different perspective of the ritual and underscores the deeper meaning behind the brand which is about the preservation of culture. The film describes the tradition, its purpose and highlights the sentiments felt by the young men at different stages of the healing process on their journey to recovery as they transition from boys to honourable men.
Look into my eyes what Do you see?
I see a man, the man I was destined to be
In the world of the Xhosa, to become an honourable man, one must go to the bush
One must be initiated
That is the rite of passage
Down the lonely road of transformation you face your demons
You speak to the spirits and you get to know your ancestors
There are some days when you wonder if you'll make it
Some souls pass on and join the ancestors in peace
One cannot heal without enduring the hardship
All I have to protect me is white ochre and my traditional cloak
It keeps me alive. And humble
During initiation, I learnt that no one can carry your manhood for you
I learnt that you have to choose to be a man
I learnt about respect, for yourself and others
I learnt to rise up to my responsibilities
To value family and people
A person is person because of other people
I was taught to be a voice for those who can't speak for themselves.
I learnt to be a shield
To remain confident at all times
To stick to my word
To embrace my struggles
You are a product if the ones that lived before you
Be a messenger of your culture and heritage
I will carry our heritage into the future
And these robes celebrate who I am.
I am Laduma Ngxokolo
A descendant from the Mpondo Clan