LISTEN | Ayanda Borotho talks self-love & slams patriarchy that oppresses women
As far as women who are making trailblazing moves and going against the tide go, actress and author Ayanda Borotho is right up there with the very best.
While 2020 mostly served us lemons the whole year, sis was serving wisdom and paradigm-shifting thoughts that often sparked much-needed debates and dialogues.
Whether she was slamming patriarchy or dismantling African traditions that have been used to oppress women in society, Ayanda’s social media platforms always ensured that you either leave her TL inspired or challenged to introspect or reflect on certain topics.
In August, which is dubbed women’s month in SA, TshisaLIVE managed to get into conversation with the actress.
Opening up about the self-love and self-awareness journey that sparked her book, Unbecoming to Become, Ayanda let us into the thought process behind her very popular book. She also spoke about how her role on Isibaya was affected by the change that happened in her personal life when she started attempting to live life by her own rules and unlearn societal expectations that were weighing heavily on her as an individual.
While Ayanda’s courageous journey has seen her get general praise from both men and women in Mzansi and abroad, it has also brought her a lot of criticism from people with opposing views to hers, especially where culture and traditions are concerned.
Ayanda took us into her world and how she deals with everything according to her truth.
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Since the release of her best-seller book, Unbecoming To Become, author and actress Ayanda Borotho has been at the forefront of much-needed conversations around liberating oppressed women.
As the nation prepared to celebrate Women's Day, Ayanda told TshisaLIVE what ignited her fire to speak out and have those often ignored conversations.
“I knew that there were many women who felt the way I felt and had walked the journey I had walked, but I didn’t realise that taking shackles off from myself and taking off everything that took away from everything I genuinely was, would inspire so many women.
“It really was just me speaking my truth about what I saw in society but I also didn’t think women were ready to have these type of conversations which is why I didn’t think it would catch as much fire as it did.”
Even though she’s grateful for the movement her book and vlogs have sparked, she admits it wasn’t her end goal when she began her journey.
“I didn’t do it because I deliberately set out to challenge the status quo. I did it because I was just living my truth and honestly questioning from a place of authenticity and saying, ‘But is this really how life is supposed to be for women?’ I think it was that honesty and that truth, and the raw authenticity, that helped the message resonate.”
Ayanda said she was very aware that her story and the things she speaks about are not new.
She said women had been speaking about issues that oppress them for a while. However, she felt that what she brought to the discussion was impactful, because it didn’t dance around the truth.
Her courage to address issues affecting women head-on spilt over into the character she plays on the popular Mzansi Magic show Isibaya. Phumelele’s journey added fuel to the heated debate about women redefining themselves.
“We didn’t plan it, it was just divine timing.
“We started saying, how can we reposition the women in this show because the truth is, Isibaya as a world is a toxic masculine world. We can’t deny that, but the trends globally are changing, where women are taking the centre stage and taking leading roles with power attached to them,” she explained.
The actress spoke about how that storyline blew up and sparked much-needed conversations.
Ayanda went on to talk about GBV and how women have been made to take responsibility for every evil thing under the sun.
She spoke about exploring the need for women to have conversations with their daughters, so that the next generation of women is at least a little better off.