It will only be fair to start with a confession in order to put things into perspective. As a black man, before reading this book I only knew that a woman’s hair is her crown- thanks to my old friend, the Bible, but I never knew what that meant.
However, after perusing through the pages of this jewel, I now fully understand what exactly that means and hence I will forever be grateful to Janine Jellars for giving me the best education about a woman’s natural hair that no university in the world can ever pass on to me.
Now, in The Big South African Hair Book, Janine has called on naturalistas (yes, this how we call women who wear their natural hair), hair experts, natural hair content creators, and medical experts to not only talk about their hair journey and relationships with their natural hair, but also to give a thorough perspective about why a woman’s natural hair, in the South African context, is her crown in the truest sense of the word.
Perusing through the pages of this book, I was filled with education, information, and thoroughly enjoyed the stories that the women shared about their journey of wearing their natural hair with pride and confidence in a highly politically charged society like ours, and how they continue to take care and maintain the crown in a healthy way.
While this book is putting a spotlight on and appreciating naturalistas, Janine wrote it in a way that does not belittle those who do not wear their natural hair. And it is this tone that will inspire many to start thinking about wearing their natural hair, through the many lessons and advises that are being offered in this purple Bible.
The Big South African Hair Book is a hair regimen that will help so many women, young and old, to rediscover their uniqueness as African women in our modern society. This is a magnificent work by Janine and this is what we (women and men) have all been craving for. And if there was a person to give us this jewel, it definitely had to be none other than Janine.
Indeed, this is a South African hair book, and it is going to have far-reaching resonance across all racial lines.
My only disappointment is the fact that the scribe, and maybe rightly so, had excluded men in the conversation in this book, even though there are many men who wear their natural hair and will need similar advises on how to keep their hair fresh and healthy like women.
Besides that, this is a book that will make many of us build solid relationships with our natural hair and love and appreciate this important part of who we are as people.