Albinism (from Latin albus, "white"; see extended etymology, also called achromia, achromasia, or achromatosis) is a congenital disorder characterized by the complete or partial absence of pigment in the skin, hair and eyes due to absence or defect of an enzyme involved in the production of melanin. Albinism results from inheritance of recessive gene alleles and is known to affect all vertebrates, including humans. The most common term used for an organism affected by albinism is "albino". Additional clinical adjectives sometimes used to refer to animals are "albinoid" and "albinic". Albinism is associated with a number of vision defects, such as photophobia, nystagmus and astigmatism. Lack of skin pigmentation makes the organism more susceptible to sunburn and skin cancers. Albinism affects people from all races and its frequency across the human population is estimated to be approximately 1 in 20,000.
In real life, albinistic people are not only socially persecuted because of their traits but also physically abused because of folklore, legends, and myths. In Zimbabwe, modern folklore posits that HIV can be treated by having sexual intercourse with an albinistic person. As a result, albinistic women are raped and subsequently infected with the viral disease. In another African country, Tanzania, albinistic people are hunted and killed for their highly priced body parts. Witchdoctors buy limbs, blood, genitals, hair, skin, organs, and other body parts of an albinistic person; they will use these body parts to make potions and concoctions that promise wealth and good luck to any person who will consume them.
Even if albinistic people are socially ridiculed as maladjusted and under socialized people, there are some of them who have gained fame because of showcasing their talents to the public. They are also actively involved in educating the public about the right way of looking at albinism. Below is the list of famous people with albinism. Famous Albino People in Films and Television Michael Bowman – American actor starred in Me, Myself & Irene Dennis Hurley – American movie producer, actor, writer, comedian, and singer Victor Varnado – African-American stand-up comedian and actor Redford White – Filipino actor and comedian Darnell Swallow – Contestant of Big Brother 9 UK in 2008 Famous Albino in Fashion Modeling Shaun Ross – First male albinistic model in mainstream fashion industry and appeared in various periodicals Connie Chiu – First female albinistic model in mainstream fashion industry