Black is still beau­ti­ful ‒ we Africans can do bet­ter!

Grocott's Mail - - MAKANA VOICES -

It is out of pain that I write this let­ter to you. Black dark skin women are be­lit­tled, marginalised and la­belled as ‘less beau­ti­ful’ than light-skinned black women.

This has noth­ing to do with race. Black and White women. It is about the way in which peo­ple in the black com­mu­nity treat one another and how the me­dia per­pet­u­ate the neg­a­tive nar­ra­tive about dark skin black women.

Dark-skinned black women are less used in ad­ver­tise­ments, mu­sic videos and movies, and where they are used they are por­trayed as this lonely, un­wanted women. I blame this on the me­dia pro­duc­ers that are push­ing this nar­ra­tive that light skin is a sym­bol of beauty.

As Africans, we can do bet­ter than this. We fought racism in the name of unity. Why can’t we ap­pre­ci­ate diver­sity within black women and be united to push a sim­ple agenda that all black women are beau­ti­ful.

I am not say­ing black light-skinned women are not beau­ti­ful. I am ex­press­ing my con­dem­na­tion of the un­healthy so­cial con­struct that seems to de­fine beauty with how light a woman’s skin is. There are of course other fac­tors that so­ci­ety uses to mea­sure beauty, namely weight and height. But th­ese two fac­tors, weight and height are used across com­mu­ni­ties, black and white, West­ern and African. They are also to be con­demned but not as much as the ‘yel­low born’ nar­ra­tive that is within the black com­mu­nity.

Your brother from another mother, Thokozani Dladla

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