Preview – Born Too White

Oscar Duke, Born Too White

As part of BBC Two’s documentary series, This World, Born Too White explores the discrimination and persecution of people with albinism in Tanzania and Malawi, East Africa. These are countries dominated by social rules and cultural beliefs and being obviously different can lead to ostracisation.

Embarking on a personal journey, NHS doctor Oscar Duke (24 Hours in A&E), who himself has albinism, sets out to discover what life is like for people who share his condition in these countries.

Tanzania has among the highest proportion of people living with albinism in the world but they are by no means accepted. With stigmas and myths being passed down through generations, being albino means being as risk of a violent attack of mutilation or murder. In the last ten years alone there have been 170 attacks on people with albinism in Tanzania, 70 of which were fatal. Many are killed for their body parts, which are believed to have magical powers.

Wanting to gain a better understanding of how his childhood compares to those in East Africa, Oscar meets young albinos facing the brunt such discrimination: from a 15 year-old boy who was brutally attacked, to children placed in a secure camp. As he digs deeper into the culture of the places he visits, he speaks to a traditional healer, to the people who hold prejudiced views towards albinism and those responsible for attacks, including a man who admits to having murdered a person with albinism for money.

Born Too White, Thursday, 9pm – BBC Two