Excellent article by Yasmin Alibhai-Brown examining the underbelly of modern self-hatred among women of colour around the world.
She asks some pertinent questions about why we are continuing to spiral into forced de-racialisation and assimilation, without adequate social fight-back.
Come on sisters, stay away from the media’s grape kool-aid.
I know that I am consistently disturbed by the prevalence of these issues among my sisters, and I guess this is why I stopped wearing makeup, went back to my dreadlocks, and have largely eschewed all fashion. Laziness might be part of it, but honestly the overhyped consumerism of the beauty industry is quite distressing.
I just can’t buy media images of what I am supposed to be. I refuse to be defined that way, but alas… I am unusual in the world and not the norm.
Back in the Sixties, the Black Is Beautiful movement in the U.S. spread across the world and made us proud to be who we were, even in Uganda, where I was growing up.
I stopped ironing my hair to try to make it look like Jean Shrimpton’s, and my African college room-mates let their hair go naturally Afro again. No more burnt hair in the sink, and a new dawn, we thought.
For a few decades, yes. But now we have a world where American morality and media impose their standardised Western notions on every corner of the globe. And a surge in ‘ethnic’ self-loathing and self-mutilation has emerged in its wake.
What is different now is the absence of any political or social fightback against this. The message seems to be that race is dispensable, can be wiped out if you can pay for the privilege. Then what?
Do Jet and Umi and all those other young women think they will be good enough to please the bigots of the BNP?
When, oh when, will we stop being our own worst enemies?