Saturday, October 03, 2020

The nationalities of Swiss athletes

In July 2018, South Africa's Kevin Anderson lost the Wimbledon final to Novak Djokovic as "the first South African in a Wimbledon final since 1985". But Roger Federer's mother is South African, and he's made a few Wimbledon finals himself over the years. I thought of this today on reading an article by Sarah Akanji, a Swiss politican and football player whose brother Manuel plays for Borussia Dortmund. As she notes, Federer articles in the Swiss press rarely mention Federer's dual citizenship, while articles about the Akanjis frequently mention their Nigerian father. It's rather clear why: Federer's name sounds more "German" than "Akanji", and Federer is melanin-deprived compared to the Akanjis. (Andrew Shields, #111words, 3 October)

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