Stories of the world: Cipriana Hoekx

I am honoured to introduce you to Cipriana Hoekx. She is a woman with a unique sense of style and with a heart of gold. Her sense of style is connected to her taste in music; it shows her personality, view on the world and music preferences. To many this style of clothing might seem aggressive, dark, mean and it might scare some off. However, this is once again the stereotypes we have, about, let’s be honest, everyone, talking.

After reading this article, I hope you will try and have a more open view on everyone in the world and that you will start to think about the (often unconscious) stereotypes we uphold about some, if not all, people.

I want to start this article off by talking to you about something that happened to Cipriana that is not okay. One night she was at a karaoke bar with her grandma. The evening was obviously starting off as a great one and they were both spending some well deserved time together. At one point, Cipriana had to go outside to catch a bit of fresh air, it was at that moment the night took a turn for the worse. She was just standing outside the karaoke bar when an older lady asked her the following: ‘Waiting for your next client?’

Why was this comment necessary? Why does someone feel like he or she can just assume things about a person and then comment on it as well? What are you supposed to do or say when someone assumes you’re a prostitute just because of the way you dress? It makes you doubt yourself, your personality and the way you show yourself to the world. Only because one person decided to make that one comment.

We first started talking about how she got into metal. Her dad used to always listen to bands like Metallica, Guns n Roses and Iron Maiden. Since she really enjoyed these bands, she started to explore the genre more and discovered some more bands. Right now some of her favourite metal bands are Metallica, Stick To Your Guns, Iron Maiden, Stray from the Path, Lamb of God, Hatebreed’ and Slayer. Her favourite punk bands are Anti Flag, Ramones, Dead Kennedies and Misfits.

Once she really got into the metal scene, she also quickly made new friends who were interested in the same genre. After that she started to look at the way the artists and her friends dressed and developped her own personal style.

Since we were already talking about clothes, she started telling me about how she felt the metal community was received by other people. It often happens that people assume all metal lovers are agressive, dark, satan admirers, mean and criminals. She also often notices people staring or acting scared around her.

This behaviour is something she just doesn’t really understand, because the metal community is very welcoming and sweet to everyone. If I, for example, wanted to go to a metal concert, even though I am not a metal fan, they would all welcome me without judging me at all. They’d just enjoy getting to know someone and sharing their music genre.

So since I don’t listen to metal or punk, I asked her what it is she liked so much about it. I only hear the screaming and the heavy music, but behind that is a whole lot more. There are many emotions embedded in the music and the lyrics. She can often relate to what they are singing about and finds the music to be exactly what she needs to get some things out of her system.

So, when you see her now you would know that she’s into metal and tattoos. However, that is not the whole story. You should always remember that there is more to people than meets the eye. She truly is one of the nicest and sweetest people I know and she is now studying to be a social worker, so she can help as many people as possible. Growing up she didn’t have much, but she still got her high school degree and didn’t let not having everything get to her. Because she knows how hard it is to not have everything, she wants to help people who are in the same position she once was.

She is a great person and wants to help change people’s lives. I hope you enjoyed reading about someone else’s life and opinions a bit. I just think this shows that we have to stop judging people based on their looks. You just don’t know what’s going on in someone’s life or how they are once you get to know them.

Thank you so much for reading. See you very soon, I promise.

x Evelien x

(c) Photographs taken by Eva Muller, Nina Gallin and Paula Kraftjenko

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