Dove’s black model says ad was not racist
A BLACK model who appeared in a Dove advert denounced as racist by many social media users has defended the clip, saying that far from belittling black women it celebrated ethnic diversity. Lola Ogunyemi unwittingly found herself at the centre of an international furore over a 3-second video posted on Dove’s U.S. Facebook page which showed her removing her t-shirt to reveal a white woman, who then took hers off to reveal an Asian woman. “I don’t feel it was racist,” she said in an interview with the BBC yesterday. Many Facebook and Twitter users said the clip signalled that white people were cleaner or more beautiful than black people and likened it to 19th century soap adverts that showed black people scrubbing themselves to become white. But Ogunyemi said the stills from the clip that shot around the internet over the weekend - which mostly showed only her and the white woman, leaving out the Asian woman - gave the wrong impression. She said there was a 30-second, made-for-TV version that had other images and a slogan that made it much clearer that the intention was to say that all women deserved quality products. “The screenshots that have taken the media by storm paint a slightly different picture,” she said. Dove apologised for the Facebook clip, saying it had “missed the mark in representing women of colour thoughtfully”.