A woman who faked being black until she was outed by her parents has given herself a new Nigerian name.
Rachel Dolezal is now known as Nkechi Amare Diallo, which means ‘gift of god’ in the west African Igbo language, after she filed legal papers in Washington.
Dolezal, 39, was a prominent activist for black people and a lecturer in African American studies in Washington.
But the single mum-of-two said her ‘world came crashing down’ when people discovered she was raised a white girl of German and Czech descent.
To make her case more convincing, Dolezal had claimed her adopted black brother was her son and that an older black man she wasn’t related to was her father.
When the fraud was revealed, people felt betrayed – particularly the black community, accusing her of ‘blackface’ and using their history of oppression for status and political gain.
Within days, her whole life came crashing down. She was forced out of the NAACP and lost her post as African Studies professor at Eastern Washington University, along with the loss of multiple friendships.
She has also revealed that she is now near homelessness because she can’t get a job.
She told the Guardian that the only work she has been offered is reality TV and porn.
Dolezal has acknowledged that she is ‘Caucasian biologically,’ but says she identifies as black.
She said that she ‘began to see the world through black eyes’ as a teenager after her parents adopted four black children. Dolezal says she decided to be publicly black years later following a divorce.
Dolezal maintains that she did nothing wrong.