A rose by any other name…
Here’s a sampling of what second-hand clothing is called in some of the countries where it is received:
Togo – dead yovo clothing – dead white person clothing.
Ghana – obroni wa wo – a white man has died.
Nigeria – kafa ulaya – the clothes of the dead whites.
Mozambique – roupa da calamidade – clothing of the calamity.
Why all the references to death? Because only death could separate a white person from such wonderful clothing – stonewashed jeans, Burberry dresses, Nike T-shirts, and lace bras.
Sierra Leone – “junks”.
Haiti – pepe.
Tanzania – Mitumba – bundles used to refer to plastic-wrapped packages of used clothing donated by people in wealthy countries. The term is also applied to the clothing that arrives in these bundles.
Zambia – Salaula, meaning “to select from a pile in the manner of rummaging” or for short, “to pick”.
Central America – Ropa Americana.