Black Women : A Black Woman Essay

986 Words Apr 11th, 2016 4 Pages
“You are pretty, for a black girl.” This saying is the subconscious parameter, and a backhanded insult ‘they’ are working with when people think of black women. It seems that out of all the black women in America, I must stand out as different, better, and more beautiful than what they think a black woman should look like. It also seems that black women, among all women, can never be just pretty—that pretty is an aberration for them, or that pretty for a black woman is some fluke of nature. Black women as a whole cannot possibly be attractive, thus proving the theory of colorism. Colorism is the discrimination based on the relative lightness or darkness of the skin (“What’s Colorism?”). I experience colorism habitually at my predominately white institution (PWI), but also within my own community. Colorism is genderless and unbiased and is a phenomenon that has prevented, or stopped, me from standing among my peers in college. When white bodies dominate institutions, the bodies and the institutions orientate towards each other, and white bodies become ‘habitual’ in these surroundings – whiteness ‘lags behind,’ and becomes unnoticed, which makes compliments like “you are pretty for a black girl” appropriate (Ahmed 151). To state that I am pretty for a black girl is a triple insult. Firstly, it is an insult to the group, since it implies that the group does not naturally possess that desirable quality. Secondly, it is an insult to the person, since it implies that they aren 't…

Related Documents