Black Girl in Suburbia
“Too white to be black, too black to be white” (Lowery, 2014). This statement was repeated several times throughout the showing of Black Girl in Suburbia, a documentary portraying the experience of director, Melissa Lowery, growing up as a black girl in West Linn, Oregon. The documentary was shown as part of the We Can Listen series put on by the Old Church Concert Hall in Portland on September 12, 2017 from 7:00-9:30pm. The purpose of the film was to provide the perspective of black girls growing up in white communities, with the goal of opening a dialogue about race. This reflection will present an event description, some positives and challenges presented by the documentary, and my reaction.
Event Description The showing of Black Girl in Suburbia attracted an audience of approximately 120 ticket holders to the event. The audience was primarily female with only seven men in attendance. Surprising to me, the vast majority of attendees where white women of retirement age, but attendees spanned down to junior high age. I estimated about five percent of the audience were minorities, mostly African American. This event attracted me as a …show more content…
During the discussion panel, one of the women told the story of her audition for a role and, when she was finished with it, the director told her to do it again “but more black this time.” On the other hand, one girl in the film brought up that some of the stereotypes, such as liking soul food and certain types of music, are valid representations of blacks and their culture. There was a consensus that the girls felt like they did not know how to fit into black culture, nor would they ever fit into the white culture where they lived. The stereotypes on both sides left them feeling