All Brown Girls Have a Story

by Janelle Harris

I’m notoriously optimistic, but even I have to come off my silver-lined cloud of fluffy hopefulness and accept that some things are just unfortunately never going to go away. Racism is one of them. Colorism is another. They’re like second cousins in the family of sociocultural pariahs, fueled by similar conditioning that has made one side of the spectrum of brown skin more desirable than the other.

I’ve blogged about its effects before, and one commenter suggested that if we just stopped talking about colorism—just knocked it off and stopped it right now—the issue would go away, poof magically into the air like wisps of dandelion dust dancing across a summery breeze. It would be nice if it vanished that prettily and tidily. I agree it’s a played out topic in the arsenal of Black community woes. But that doesn’t mean not talking about it is going to lead to some miraculous, blanketed healing.

A few weeks ago, the national tour of Bill Duke and D. Channsin Berry’s documentary, “Dark Girls,” made its stop here in D.C. I didn’t get a chance to see it—my daughter had dance class and mommy duty trumped anything else on the agenda. But I’ve discussed it at length with ladies who are all too familiar with the subject matter at the heart of the film. They’ve grown up carrying other folks’ baggage about how dark is too dark, shouldering hurtful comments about their unacceptable shade of brown, and questioning themselves because they believed, in the pit of their souls, that life would be better if they had been born able to pass somebody’s paper bag test.

I feel that hurt for them. My best friends are chocolate women who have stories that make my blood boil hot like fire whenever they tell them, painful memories of grandmothers preferring one child over another because of lighter skin or elementary school classmates taunting with names like “African bush boogie.” That’s not including the mess that men and the media have offloaded on them as they matured into beautiful but fragile young ladies. But I can’t help but feel like focusing on just some Black women’s experience with colorism works to reinforce the same divide that colorism creates in the first place.

I didn’t grow up knowing anything about being dark-skinned or light-skinned, at least in my early years. In my mama’s hand-me-down perspective, it didn’t matter if you were café au lait or chocolate deluxe. You was just Black. Out in the world, she argued, nobody was splitting hairs about complexions or shades. She herself is relatively fair, but she grew up slinging fists from being called “nigger” just like the darkest of the kids in her school. Being light-skinned didn’t spare her from any of the head or heartaches of being a Black kid in a grudgingly integrated town in the 1960s so it held no merit or mention in our house.

  • http://afrikanmami.blogspot.com African Mami

    eh, all human beings have a story…..not just brown girls. Self-esteem is what brown girls need. This dark skinned/light skinned bull is just overthetopdotcom. I can’t relate to it because I was brought up color blind-in regards to shade of black. If your ass was high yellow or ebony dark so long as it was a shade of the color black. Guess what, you is BLACK. You were no better or worse off…….although I do have to acknowledge the white man’s favoritism of light skinned Africans to having created divide eg. North and South Sudan.

  • CaliDreaming86

    Once while working at a Credit Union, a Black, male customer referred to me as the, ‘redbone girl’…

    Anyway, I’ve lost count the number of times I’ve had men and boys on the street yell, “Aye, lightskin!” or “Yea, I am talking to you, Lightskin”. I once had a guy tap me on my arm in a mall and say, “What’s up, light brick”.

    I’ve definitely gotten the, “You talk so proper” line, too.

  • http://gisforgrace.wordpress.com NinaG

    I think Arab invasion in North Africa have more to do with the division of Sudan than white men.

  • http://gisforgrace.wordpress.com NinaG

    All brown girls have a story…and all brown girls should share their stories.
    There is so much power in telling your story (which is part of the reason folks will try and shut you down).

  • http://twitter.com/blaccbunny Blaccbunny

    I think it’s interesting that this topic seems to be concentrated just on the AA community, when in many cultures the light v.s. dark skin is abundant. Honestly, it will never go away. Even if the world was blind, we would still find a way to discriminate others. (i.e. when Ray Charles would feel the wrist of the women when speaking to them)
    I am dark skin and I haven’t heard the “you’re pretty for a dark skin girl”, in a long time because it’s the people that you surround yourself with. I choose to not be around those people who focus on a slight case of self hatred and when I do hear someone who speaks of pure ignorance about it, oh, I shut them down!

  • Ms. Information

    Glad that you gave this perspective….I have friends from very light to very dark and we all have a story. My mom’s best friend is very light and buys make-up to look darker skinned. Great article!

  • Socially Maladjusted

    Excuse me but whenever I hear light skinned women whining about catcalls that reference their skin tone – I become curious

    what’s your beef?

    is it that a “hey redbone” catcall is describing you out of the black race or -

    into it?

    I mean, a black man wouldn’t catcall a Chinese woman with a “hey light skin”

    why?

    because she has no black blood so her light skinnedness has no black connection..

    The blackness of a light skinned black woman, on the otherhand, is being acknowledged and embraced when I go -

    “mi luv mi brownin”.

    LOL

    yoos a redbone -

    the end

    As for dark skins

    Please refer to your own conduct of elevating light skins into some kind of aristocracy among blacks. Dark skins make light skin privilege possible and then complain about being excluded from it.

    boo the f uck hoo to both of yers.

    shut up

  • MsKat

    ahahhahahaahLOLOLOL

    Very self centered and racist to consider you have a market on anything as a ‘people’. Everyone has a story, you certainly do not have even a corner in that market because you’re -a color-.

    After the recent tsuami, we hardly hear much -AGAIN- from the Japanese…. but we will not be allowed to move forward from the woas of Katrina now will we?

    If anything, I would like venture to say blacks have the market on whining and unwarranted expectation and demands.

    We should all be allowed to speak our thoughts without ridiulous backlash.

  • FlawlessBrownBeauty

    I didn’t grow up knowing anything about being dark-skinned or light-skinned, at least in my early years. ~ Exactly.

    I grew up the exact same way. My grandmother was light- skinned. So is my mother and my sister. Eventhough, I am dark-skinned I was constantly told how beautiful I was/am, how pretty my skin is by family members, black people and white people. I would receive the “you’re pretty to be a black girl” comments occasionally. What caught my attention about this statement was the emphasis being placed on “black”. I woud think and even ask, “A black woman isn’t considered as beautiful in your eyes?” The response always was, “I didn’t mean to offend you”.

    Not until I attended college, I didn’t realize the color blindness weighing in against the beauty of a brown skin woman. Until this day I still don’t. Actually, it is somewhat the opposite for me. In my eyes, I just think the “the shades of a brown complexion” within itself is beautiful. That is not to take away from light- skinned women (I’m sure you would kill me) because I do think they are beautiful as well. If a woman is beautiful, then she is beautiful. However, I don’t believe she is necessary beautiful just because she has lighter skin.

    I believe it is too embedded in society through our families, communities, and magazines/television to consider brown skin as automatically beautiful compared to light- skinned women. Since my brown skin was embraced as long as I can remember, it doesn’t sway me at all when it comes to society’s love of the lighter woman. Therefore, I believe it does go back to our surroundings to embrace the beauty of all women early on. Due to an apparent societal love for lighter-skin women, I constantly remind my darker-skin nieces how beautiful they are. I am hoping as women one day, they will too embrace their beautiful brown *flawless* skin as well. ;)

  • MsKat

    Very well said Flawless. Beauty comes from what you allow in your heart…..not your skin tone.

  • arlette

    wow sorry but you comment is beyond stupid. i dont even know where to start. how can anyone be ok with being noticed for their skin tone befoer anthing else. i have never heard a white person call out a fellow white person by their skin tone. can you imagine white people saying you peachy or orangy or pinky come here .black people have a huge problem when it comes to colorism. a beautiful friend of mine decided that in order to be succesful in life she needed to lighten her skin, bleach her hair blonde and change her last name to sound more white. self hatred is something that i hate and i wish people would stop and love themselves more. i thank the lord that when i look in the mirror i love every black feature i see and most of all i love my skin colour, might not be light or that dark but i love it.

  • arlette

    since you are not black please move away, no one wants your ignorance here.

  • Socially Maladjusted

    and btw

    if the only “story” black women have to tell is about skin tone then –

    you’re boring.

    Have ya got anything to else talk about?

    I mean, I thought being able to talk “proper” was a coded way of letting people know you’re well educated, well read and CONVERSANT in a RANGE of topics.

    yeh right!

  • MsKat

    humm, obviously a premature effort on my part

  • Socially Maladjusted

    arlette

    I don’t think my comment is stupid at all, people use all kinds of de-personalizing descriptions in reference to others

    so what?

    would you object to someone shouting “hey teacher” at you?

    Redbone is a term of endearment not abuse,

    Let’s not go through the number of ways women de-personalize or objectify men.

  • arlette

    “and btw
    if the only “story” black women have to tell is about skin tone then –
    you’re boring.
    Have ya got anything to else talk about?
    I mean, I thought being able to talk “proper” was a coded way of letting people know you’re well educated, well read and CONVERSANT in a RANGE of topics”.

    no one said skin tone is the most important thing to talk about, but it isnt something to be ignored. Shadism is something black people experience all the time and to brush it under the rug doesnt help anyone. i have seen mothers favouring one child out of the many they had coz of their skin tone. i have seen siblings picking on eachother because of this. some people resort to using the most dangerous chemicals so they can be just a bit lighter. i have seen people bleaching their skin with actual bleach. rappers telling the world that they find dark skin women disgusting and unnattractive. imagine lil wayne said something about how ugly dark women are and his daughter is dark. sorry but if you want to bury your head in the sand and pretend it doesnt happen go ahead but luckly not everyone is like you. get over it and stop commenting if you have nothing useful to say. sexist pig. as for talking proper, what the hell is that what is talking proper?

  • Socially Maladjusted

    arlette

    but if you want to bury your head in the sand and

    “pretend it doesnt happen”

    ok

    “but luckly not everyone is like you

    but most people wanna be.

    “stop commenting if you have nothing useful to say”.

    No need to stop then coz I have plenty useful to say and I still hate the topic.

    sorry :-)

    “sexist pig.”

    what just because I like porking big booty redbones?

    “as for talking proper, what the hell is that what is talking proper?”

    It’s what I can do and you need to learn to do.

  • edub

    People are getting tired of these stories, especially when they are steeped in denial and lack of progress. We ALL have stories. The best of us overcome them and make them our histories.

  • QofNew

    @edub

    Very beautifull put. Your history does not have to be your destiny. :)

  • arlette

    “sexist pig.”
    what just because I like porking big booty redbones?

    no its because of the many comments you make about women. you can go ahead and do whatever you like with those ‘redbones’ as a bisexual im not hatin, i would probably do the same but with a bit more respect for them of course.

    “as for talking proper, what the hell is that what is talking proper?”
    It’s what I can do and you need to learn to do

    how would you know MR can you hear me talk? can you here my london accent all the way from there. im also fed up of black people thinking that way.

  • Cara

    I would suggest that we all make a conscious effort to make colorism go away. It can be done, just hold your head up and walk proud, no matter what complexion you are. Men love confident women. Stop listening to all the crap and focus on how beautiful you are and don’t give in to the negativity. We can make this go away, but you have to make it go away. Believe in your beauty and WORK!!!!!!!!! Quit crying and begging, let that old crap go, this is 2012, make it work!!!!!!!!!!

  • Cara

    Why let idiots and degenerates dictate how you feel?!?!?!?! Just because they are stuck in 1934, does not mean we all have to be. Suck it up and walk proud, isn’t it about time??!?!!?!?!!? WORK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • http://www.DCAfterWork.com AlesiaMichelle

    This is so stupid… I wish this whole colorism thing was just done. I didn’t know it even existed in today’s world until I went to an HBCU. We perpetuate colorism. White people have nothing to do with it. Real talk, in the real world Black is Black.

    (Fashion magazines and Hollywood are not the real world)

    I think racism is very much so alive, but colorism is a seedy thing that exists in Black culture.

  • http://pervertedalchemist.blogspot.com Perverted Alchemist

    Trying to make the issue of colorism disappear is difficult- it’s not going away folks!!!!
    This is something that has been a part of Black history, for better or worse. So to imply that it needs to go looks good on paper, but isn’t possible in the real world.

  • TheBestAnonEver, Part 2

    I am so over this topic from both sides and I am on side of this spectrum. I don’t want to sound unsympathetic, but we were all teased about something when we were kids. I don’t have any patience for grown still weeping about what happened to them when they were 8 years old. This rhetoric of the ‘poor darkie’ is so condescending and infantilizing. You and/or friends experiences do not represent the experiences of all black women or even all black women that share whatever skin tone.

    For f-sake, move on from this tired topic.

  • TheBestAnonEver, Part 2

    You comment is silly and not well thought out. Are you in Japan? Why would you expect to hear much about the Tsunami in Japan if you are not there. The non-Japanese media has moved on to other topics (the election) happening closer to home or that are recently breaking. Katrina happened right here at home, the local media you listen to regularly will focus on it more.

  • Makeda7

    What is black though? It’s not the complexion of someone’s skin. The thing is, so called blacks, african americans, or whatever you all choose to agree to be called because you don’t know what you really are; you’re not educated on why things are the way they are. If we were all enlighten and knowledgeable on our past, then there would be no inferiority and complexion issues. And no, we aren’t black, we aren’t african american, colored, negor, afro american; you’re identifying yourself with things that do not exist.

  • http://afrikanmami.blogspot.com/ African Mami

    @ TBAE,PII

    WORRRRRRRRRRRD!!!!! Woe unto me-needs to end with the quickness…..

    @Makeda7,

    I’m hella confused as to whatever it is you are alluding to. I’m black as all hell! Watchuonabout?!

  • Socially Maladjusted

    @Arlette

    can you here my london accent?

    heeeey

    you from London?

    ditto

    from sunny Thornton Heath, Souf London

    Well why didn’t ya say?

    We could have avoided all this uncessaryness.

    We black “brits” are supposed to be setting an example for these black “yanks”, They’re not potty trained and haven’t been taught NOT to air dirty (black community) laundry in public.

    We’re also supposed to be role modelling a united black man and black woman front for them since they’ve forgotten that black men and black women are in this til death do unite us with our ancestors.

    Supposed to be that is . . .

    LOL! .

  • arlette

    “We black “brits” are supposed to be setting an example for these black “yanks”, They’re not potty trained and haven’t been taught NOT to air dirty (black community) laundry in public.
    We’re also supposed to be role modelling a united black man and black woman front for them since they’ve forgotten that black men and black women are in this til death do unite us with our ancestors.
    Supposed to be that is ”

    wow and you got all that in one comment? you need help mate.

  • G-Ball

    I don’t know if it’s just the age gap or my just general intolerance for ignorance, but I cannot for the life of me understand the popularity of artist such as Lil Wayne who blatantly disrespect ALL black women when he constantly invokes insults and negativity towards darker complexioned black women. The fact that he is one of the most popular rap artists today speaks volumes of how we will allow anyone to disrespect black women.

    Does this idiot understand that these same “dark skinned” women that he detests so much has allowed him space on this planet! Or that he has a daughter that may hear this mess? I am with the writer in believing this issue should die a fast death. The way they are treating our president who is not only lighter complexioned but also biracial should open our eyes to “They really don’t care about us”.

    It is amazing that other cultures that come to this country and pull themselves together, barely speaking English and open businesses (in our communities no less!) and make buckets of money while we still sit around and complain and back stab, rob and kill one another. Other races are guilty too, but there are still in my opinion more supportive relationships. The lack of our financial prsoperity is a direct correlation of our self hatred in our looks and towards each other. It would be really nice if we could apreciate all black beauty that makes us unique such as the many skin tones and hair textures, we could possibly advance further.

  • WhatIThink

    Colorism is not as prevalent in America as it used to be. To me classism is more prevalent than colorism. However, colorism has been an integral part of racism and white supremacy. The best example of this is seen in the Carribean, where to this day many of the land owning elites are mulattoes and creoles who were favorites of the British or French. In America, the predominant bastions of colorism were in places like Louisiana and other parts of the South. But it existed elsewhere as well with those who could pass as white did so and kept their more than one drop of black blood very quiet.

    The point being the system of white supremacy and jim crow created the conditions for black folks to segregate themselves by color lines in order to be closer to whites and this situation is found in all former colonies around the world. In fact the Spanish and Portuguese were the worst as they have so many different gradients and classifications of “race” based on skin color it is ridiculous. And in all of this black folks of the blackest hue were always at the bottom.

  • Bunni

    Ummm . . .this is a site geared towards Black women/issues. Why would the author of this article write about anything related to stories of women of other colors? Rhetorical question out of the way, my ‘brown girl story’ is this: for some reason only they know, I find that white men are very complimentary regarding my complexion – so much more so that my brothas. And I also notice white men are becoming increasingly vocal about it, while many Black males bypass me for someone of a “lighter persuassion”. I love and accept my dark coloring, for as we ALL know: Black don’t crack!

  • Pseudonym

    yES! I HATE the word “red bone.” It’s so not sexy. Brown skin girls get chocolate, caramel, warm brown- all these descriptions that infer a sweetness of taste and warmness of feel. and “red bone?” Not even close. Not even used in the same sentence as beautiful, warm…it’s beyond objectifying. It’s…uGH!

  • LemonNLime

    @TheBestAnonEver, Part 2 – PREACH! And if you are an adult walking around still dealing with the results of this foolishness, go talk to someone professionally. Not your friend or preacher or Mama. I am so TIRED of this topic.

  • LemonNLime

    There was a comedian, maybe SInbad, who talk about that. He joked about how in the light/dark skin debate the ultimate winners were medium brown people because they are in the middle so there was nothing to fight about plus they get get nice descriptions like “milk chocolate”, “cacao”, “cafe au lait” etc. while the other peoples descriptions would be more like black licorice, banana taffy, high yello/redbone, etc. which don’t sound as tasty as their medium counter parts.

  • LadyShabazz

    To the person that said he/she doesn’t understand why this issue is focused on the African American community, do your research! Historically speaking, people of African descent have dealt with this issue since the creation of slavery. Yes colorism permeates many communities, but it all stems from the issue of white power and privilege. It also stems from the fact that many people are of African descent but because they are not distinctly Black or AA, they do not necessarily have the same burdens as Black people in America.

    Furthermore, colorism in the AA community is more overt than any other group. Just look at television, movies, commercials, etc. Light skinned women are usually chosen or featured. Light skinned women are usually alongside a white male or dark skin black male in commercials. Whatever the scenario may be, the main point is that for the Black community the whole “filed nigger” v “house nigger” is a major issue that gets played up by the media.

    If other communities have such a problem they should go about addressing it as well. However, this post focuses specifically on Black women. It is not up to the Black community to address everyone else’s problem. With 400 years of slavery and 100+ years of Jim Crow, the Black community is still fighting its own fights.

  • apple

    i think people can move on if it can stop be thrown in their face everytime they forget. i dont want to be reminded that i’m black or that i’m light skin, i hate hearing that everyday from my mom or a relative or whatever.. sh*t i know ! i can look in the mirror! i can look at my hands in front of me.. its easy to forget what you look like when you not being reminded every single day.. and i think thats the problem,ignore the skin color and think about the person on the inside..just let it be.

  • Usagi

    The main issue was for me was that I was picked for my hue. I have dark brownish red skin and dark pruple lips. My color is the same as this this character. http://www.google.com/imgres?um=1&hl=en&sa=N&rlz=1T4DMUS_enUS263US263&biw=1440&bih=677&tbm=isch&tbnid=2NWx_dyFml4u8M:&imgrefurl=http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Pharaoh_Atem&docid=0u60IrkJ3oIARM&imgurl=http://images.wikia.com/yugioh/images/b/bd/Atemu.JPG&w=350&h=520&ei=BvY_T4izFtLcggem3vyqCA&zoom=1&iact=hc&vpx=179&vpy=151&dur=3539&hovh=274&hovw=184&tx=110&ty=152&sig=112242140623188176622&page=1&tbnh=150&tbnw=101&start=0&ndsp=23&ved=0CEkQrQMwAA

    I have a hard time fitting in with most people. Black or white. The kids at school use call me a dirty indun and pie face. They told me that my lips were diseased and that I smoked crack. i love my dark purple lips and I was born with them. I think pink lips are kinda gross.

  • Jahmella

    No one has ever told me “your pretty for a dark skin girl”, does that mean I’m ugly (lol)? What’s wrong with black women sharing their stories about the way colorism has effected them? I’m just curious, I don’t get tired of hearing these stories, especially when I hear stories from the light skin prospected in whom I use to idolized. I’m not downing light skin women, I mean I use to want to be light skin so bad because I thought they had it better. I’m interested in these stories because it’s similar to my story. Colorism isn’t going anywhere and isn’t as simple as letting go. The issue is not about self-pity “I’m dark skin whoa is me”. The ability for woman from different backgrounds to relate to the “color complex” indicates that the issue is more than individual, it’s cultural. I’m about to watch a movie and don’t feel like writing any more, so I will end with Jim Crow and ways of thinking being passed down.

  • Onyx

    I must say that I never had an issue loving my dark skin since I was raised in a home where I was taught I was beautiful just the way God made me. However, as I stepped out into the world on my own, I quickly discovered the devastating effects of colorism. To make a long story short, I learned that many black people equate light skin with beauty (hence, the term fair skinned which alludes to beauty) and that to many; a dark skin woman could NEVER be considered beautiful just because of the color of her skin–period. Of course, that does not effect the way I view myself but I realized from early on how the world views blackness and that the darker the woman is; the lower she is on totem pole of beauty (usually). If you ask the average person white, black or other who are the most beautiful black female celebrities, you are likely to hear the following: Beyonce, Rhianna, Halle Berry, Alicia Keys, Tyra Banks, Jada Pinkett Smith. Hmmm, I wonder why? Better yet, a better question might be who are some dark skin female celebrities. I can assure you, there are not many…and no, the reason is NOT because dark skin women are not beautiful. The media has painted a picture that black beauty can only exist in it’s lightest shades, which many people have unconsciously subscribed to–especially black men. Furthermore, the vast majority of opportunity in the media spotlight is given to black women of a lighter persuasion because they sell better. Again, I wonder why? (not really)

    Although, I have been considered to be beautiful by many of all races, I once had a black man reduce my worth to another woman he considered to be 5x more beautiful than me just because she was mixed with Japanese (yes, he had the audacity to say so jerk that he was). For the record, I love my dark skin and will allow no one to define how I feel about myself; however, I cannot deny the social conditioning that colorism has had on the black community. Not talking about it does not make it go away, but rather exposing it brings light to the issue so we can take steps to mend it. To all of the people in denial about this issue….yes, the truth can hurt sometimes. However, to call the author or others who choose to expose this issue a derogatory name is purely ignorant on your part. If the founders of the civil rights movement chose to ignore racism and Jim Crowism, then we all would be living a very different reality that we are living today.

  • leonard smalls

    Though provoking comment. However, allow me to provide the following:

    1. Contradiction – your comment that “[t]his dark skinned/light skinned bull is just overthetopdotcom. I can’t relate to it because I was brought up color blind-in regards to shade of black. If your ass was high yellow or ebony dark so long as it was a shade of the color black. Guess what, you is BLACK.” Your use of the term “high yellow” reflects that you indeed are not as color-blind as you claimed.

    2. Definition – “Black” is not a technical term to describes a people, it is used to describe a certain phenotype. There is no “Black land” where all of the blacks are located.

    3. Delusion – your claim of being “color blind” arguably is an attempt to escape the reality of your subservient existence. Just for clarity, the issue does not revolve around whether or not you see color (because your group is subjugated), but rather whether the dominant group sees color; which is a resounding “yes.” Furthermore, you were made different and to purposely disregard your reflection in the mirror arguably leads one to conclude that your reality of your dark hue has resulted in mental impairment.

    4. Color – you may be considered unattractive not because you are dark, but rather your bone structure, nasal diameter, or uneven skin tone may be the deciding factor. In addition, a person’s attitude and hygiene also contributes to a person’s attractiveness. All to often in this country a certain segment of “Black” people are poor, unkept, and ill-mannered.

  • Cree

    Cara,

    I couldn’t agree more. I will definitely try more to shine in my own light as a woman of a darker hue…I feel good and it may change perceptions of others. I also only surround myself around people where this is not an issue.

  • Cree

    I have a similar story. So much so that I think it relevant to bring up that my mother told me growing up this would be the case. My mother is a lighter brown, and I am a darker skinned woman. She was born in 63, me in 89. She often told me I was so beautiful and there are men that just love my complexion, typically lighter-skinned black men or white men. She would chalk it up to opposites attract. She would explain that those men weren’t tainted by the colorism issue as much as other men were who in Minneapolis, MN said explicitly they ONLY wanted light women (like Lil Wayne).

    I am married to a man who is black and lighter-skinned although I have always been attracted to anyone of any color/race/shade. And I have ONLY been told I was beautiful by my husband, and other WAY older white men. Wtf????

    *My dad was in the home and a very loving father. But pretty and beautiful is not something he said. he said I looked nice or “wow!”, if that counts.

    ***My mother considers herself medium light-brown and said she had a tough time dating because to the blacks around her her color was just regular and therefore didn’t garner a strong attraction factor. Interesante.

  • http://afrikanmami.blogspot.com/ African Mami

    @ Mr.Smalls,

    Please allow me to discontradict the “contradictions” you supposedly read into.

    -I am color blind-to the different shades of black. It doesn’t matter whether you is about to turn white so long as your white is a shade of black-you is BLACK! I used those terms to show the different and unique hues that we have-should not be used as a focal point for conflict. Makes no damn sense to me.

    @ the definition-miss me with that. My comment was not written as a technical dissertative dictionary.

    @ delusion assumption. I am not delusional probably lingua franca limited in that I cannot articulate myself in the most technical manner you would. Eh, I’m color blind to NONSENSE, otherwise of course I’ll note if you is browner than my fro…

    To sum up my thoughts…..this dark/light bull is overthetopdotcom because at the end of the day, we still fight the same battles! Shoot me.

  • mina

    It’s really disheartening to read comments on here either question if colorism is really a thing (umm, of course it is, we could write a whole article on the lighting of Beyonce over the years in beauty ads), asking that the topic should just not be covered at all because it’s “over-exposed”, and lacking any empathy what-so-ever when it comes to how colorism affects dark-skin women.

    Listen, if colorism didn’t affect you growing up, wether you’re dark or light-skinned and you were fortunate that you grew up in an environment where you were told you were beautiful, then good for you! But, are you so cold and willing to leave your head in the sand, that you can’t see how it does affect others?

    Growing up, I had a terrible, terrible self-image in regards to my skin color and kinky hair, and I never questioned why. I never knew about colorism, white privilege and the like. With documentaries such as “Dark Girls”, I can learn for myself why I felt the way I did, and move on.

    If your really that sick of issues such as this being brought up, maybe you shouldn’t be reading black-orientated media.

  • http://blackonpurpose.blogspot.com/ gryph

    yawn. everyone has a story. stop being racist.

  • Pingback: Bias Against Dark-Skinned Women | LA Progressive

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