so, we're entering the last moments that mastodon has before i go on my "dreadlocks are only for black people" tirade

slavery, kidnapping conditions 

okay here we go. so historically, dreadlocks are a hairstyle that directly comes from slavery. when my people were taken from our native lands and forced on the ships, they were crammed so tightly, they would often get drenched in each others bodily fluids. that, plus time, and general lack of access to hygiene, matted the hair of the enslaved people and created this "style"

slavery, kidnapping conditions 

even in this picture, which depicts around 500 people, is an understatement. it's known now that slave ships easily had double what this shows.

when they unloaded the ships, the story goes that the slave owners mocked the state of the enslaved people's hair, and called their appearance "dreadful"

so this right here is one of the main points of why only black people have a right to wear our hair like this. it's directly a result of slavery.

other groups have matted their hair but it's not the same thing, and shouldn't be called the same thing. i'm having some trouble finding the images now, but years ago i did a deep dive and found photos of what indian and irish matted hair looks like. neither looks anything like black dreadlocks do, since they didn;t use products to manipulate their hair texture to mimic ours.

@senzubean I was interested by the Irish bit and it seems like even that is tenuous. The Irish tradition of plaiting hair was probably the source, because poorly maintained plaits would have matted, but the source for "glibbes" (which doesn't even sound like a word the Irish would have coined, IMO) seems to be an Irish-hating English colonist accusing Irish people of using their hair to hide from the law, or something.
note-a-bear.tumblr.com/post/10
becausegoodheroesdeservekidney (2nd commnt)

@senzubean So it seems that while we have a legit claim to body ink, our hairstyles were more viking plaits (probably comes from Viking heritage, too) than Locs.
I dunno though, I'm no historian and maybe Irish locs were a thing, too. We've been bored on this Island a long time, probably had a lot of fashions before all the invasions that never got documented well and remained in pockets.
But most of the "historians" since Rome thought we were animals and just made shit up.

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