Kanye West’s Presidential Bid Sparks Memories of When He Lived in China

Kanye West is trending all over the world after announcing his plans to run for president this election year. The moment took over Twitter and launched some of his fans into a state of confusion. Is he joking? Is he serious? Kim Kardashian West as the first lady?

While the memes and conspiracy theories are in full swing on social media, so is the excavation mission looking for details from West’s past.

A few people went all the way back to his childhood and brought up that time he lived in China. We won’t toss out the internet’s thoughts about a conspiratorial connection, but there were more than a couple about his “ties” to China. But it’s simple.

Kanye West
Kanye West | David Becker/Getty Images

Kanye West is a Chicago native

As most of West’s fans know, he was born in Atlanta but raised in Chicago. After West’s parents divorced when he was three, he and his mother, Donda West, moved to the Windy City.

When he was a young child, West’s mom was an English professor at Chicago State University and he eventually wound up attending the school as an English major.

Before that, he and his mother went on an adventure to China, and that fact is popping back up in the midst of his declaration about the presidency.

Kanye West used to live in China as a kid

As the news of Kanye West’s supposed presidential bid spread across the globe, some social media users on Twitter and Weibo brought up his old link to China. When West was 10 years old, his mother accepted a teaching position in Nanjing, China as a Fulbright scholar, per the Los Angeles Times.

Radii posted excerpts of an old 2008 interview between West and writer Jake Newby, and the rapper/businessman spoke fondly of his time in the country.

This was captured after his mother passed away in 2007.

China was a time where me and my mom spent the most time together, we spent a year together, and she used to homeschool me. I was in school and I wasn’t doing so good, but it was actually because I was bored and after she homeschooled me I did so good on the tests they put me two grades above in a lot of different courses.

We really connected there, so it’ll probably be very emotional for me to go back to China. As soon as you, y’know, feel the energy and hit the ground and see familiar sights from your childhood, and familiar smells — which is the most memorable sense of all — it’ll take me right back to fifth grade with my mom.

West once said living there made him feel like a celebrity

West’s old classmates were amused to find out years later he became a hip-hop star back in the U.S. Many remembered him to be kind and a little shy.

But West found the experience be good preparation for his life in the public eye. According to Thatsmags, he said:

“I think being in China got me ready to be a celeb because, at that time, a lot of Chinese had never seen a black person. They would always come up and also stare at me, fishbowl me and everything. And that’s kind of the way it is for me right now.”


Revealed: Kanye West Shares What His Mother, Donda, Would Think About His New Family

He’s now going viral in the country over the presidential bid, with some social media users calling him Nanjing’s son. Meanwhile, others are wondering if West is serious about his endeavor or if it’s a promo for his upcoming album.