Why We’ve Stopped Using The Word Tribe

We as parents have the most important role to play in shaping the future. We’re role models for our children, shaping their language, their views and their outlook on the world. Only through continual learning can we teach our children, and influence the next generation to ensure a fair and equal world for all.

At Baba+Boo, we’re constantly learning and evolving to ensure we’re being the best version of ourselves, which means sometimes we need to reflect on current practices and make changes. Change is something we strive for every day, whether it’s the change of habits or change for the sake of our children, change is the only way we can all continue to grow. 

That’s why we’re dropping the word ‘tribe’.

We used ‘tribe’ to describe our amazing, passionate community who are committed to standing up for something and advocating for change. However, if the last few months have taught us anything it’s that words, names and phrases carry weight. Many of us have opened our eyes to the hurt and harm of historically oppressed groups. The BLM movement has led to a collective realignment here at Baba+Boo, leading us to question our choices and consider our impact. 

We’ve been thinking long and hard about this word and all it evokes. ‘Tribe’ can be offensive to many people due to the violence, colonialism and history associated with its meaning. It’s a word that has been used to marginalize indigenous communities, failing to recognise their history and their oppression. 

Tribe" reflects widespread but outdated 19th-century social theory… it promotes a myth of primitive African timelessness.” - Teaching Tolerance. 

Words are hugely powerful. They can change the trajectory of history, influence people's lives and evoke deep feelings within us, which is why we’re committed to considering the impact of the words we use. While we’re not experts in this field, we do know that to many people, ‘tribe’ is offensive. 

This is why we’ve made the decision to drop it from our brand moving forward. 

Instead, we will use the word ‘community’, which we think reflects the support and knowledge sharing of our own cloth bum parents. We’ve also changed the name of our ‘Tribe’ nappy to ‘Community’. This print was launched last year as part of the Ten Collection, and it's a name we no longer see as appropriate. We’ll also be donating profits to The Black Curriculum to help support their work in addressing the lack of Black British history in the UK Curriculum. We truly believe that the next generation can be the true changemakers and help to overcome these wider systemic issues.

While for many ‘tribe’ may just be a word, for many it is much much more than that, so we’re challenging its usage, continuing our learning and committing to continually evolving our brand to question the norm.


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