Figures of Speech - An Interview with Takyiwa Danso


In life, the power of speech is perhaps the most vital means of self-expression and thought-provocation. Before ideas are codified into the written word, sincere speech condenses creativity and personality into language, communicating more than just mere concepts.

One such speaker with a voice that demands to be heard is 24-year-old Londoner Takyiwa Danso. In her speech ‘Do I Tick The Box?’, Danso explores the difficulties and contradictions inherent in trying to build a truly diverse and inclusive society, one that includes all without erasing the differences that make us unique.

Drawing on personal experience of being singled out for her race, gender and youth, Takyiwa Danso demands that under-represented groups “do not want to be invited to the table, we want to build that table with you and claim our rightful place.” Ultimately, “the focus on diversity should be less of a box ticking exercise and more of a box breaking movement.”

In her speech Do I Tick The Box?, the 24 year-old Londoner explores the difficulties and contradictions inherent in trying to build a truly diverse and inclusive society, one that includes all without erasing the differences that make us unique. A Youth Development Advocate and Youth Delegate at the UN General Assembly, Danso is committed to creating a platform for those who might not otherwise be acknowledged.

We met to expand on her speech and debate issues of tokenism, apathy, and safe spaces.

Read the interview in Hero Magazine

[This piece was published on 20/11/17]