The Afro comb and the politics of hair: Audio slideshow

The Afro comb has been used by people in Africa and the continent's diaspora for centuries.

An exhibition at the University of Cambridge's Fitzwilliam Museum looks at the Afro comb's impact as both a hair care tool and cultural symbol over the last 6,000 years. It takes visitors on a journey that looks at ancient Egypt, the US civil rights movement and communities across Africa and the Caribbean. Take a brief tour with exhibition curator Sally-Ann Ashton.

To see the enhanced content on this page, you need to have JavaScript enabled and Adobe Flash installed.

Origins of the Afro Comb can be seen at the Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge, until 3 November 2013.

Images courtesy: Fitzwilliam Museum, AP, AFP, Getty Images, Alexis Akwagyiram.

Music by Fela Kuti, Gil Scott-Heron, Damian Marley and A Tribe Called Quest.

Slideshow produced by Alexis Akwagyiram, Paul Kerley and Emma Lynch.


Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge

Natural afro hair makes comeback

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external websites.

More Africa stories


Copyright © 2019 BBC. The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.