Misrepresentation Of Black Women

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In the 2011 documentary film Dark Girls, Dr. Cheryl Grills states that “beauty to black people is just a small piece of a much bigger animal.” Women of African descent throughout American history have been in a constant battle between themselves and the world that surrounds them. When media evolved in the nineteen seventies the women of the world seemed to have taken “control” and the “strong black woman” movement began. Throughout the mass media there are various over-generalizations of a black woman. Mainstream media in American society plays a key role in producing negative stereotypes about this race. The misrepresentation of black women can have an ongoing effect on their self-esteem and self-image. The portrayal of this race has been …show more content…
American mainstream systematically fosters racism and discrimination through this era. Societies stereotypical views of the minorities plays in the media and has affected the way black people, as well as American society, values the identities of black women. From a young age advertisements and the mass media is where one becomes aware of these representations. Advertising tells a person who they are and who they should be. Jean Kilbourne discusses in her documentary Killing Us Softly the influence that advertisement has on the subconscious mind. “Advertising’s influence is quick, it’s commutative, and for the most part it’s subconscious.” The average American watches more than 4 hours of TV each day (A.C. Nielsen Co.). Seeing that structural racism can be found on TV shows, in movies, magazines and news broadcasts, it is a great sell for advertising companies to give the people false images. There are various stereotypical views of a black girl in the media and some present day examples include: “The Angry Black Woman” which is the most popular. She is the lady who is always yelling, throws hand gestures, and uses lots of neck rolling. She is often described by other characters as the “bubble gum popping” girl has lots to say. On a TV series called Bad Girls Club the bases …show more content…
Actress, Viola Davis in an interview held for the production Dark Girls, talks about her experience with growing up in an all white neighborhood. She explains that she would never see black women on television associated with beauty, softness, kindness or femininity and it frightened her. “I was forced to believe it does not exist.” Women of color are generally considered beautiful only if they approximate the white ideal. Media overall has a great impact on women growing up in society. The media creates images in the mind of what one should look like and be like. “Images in our lives effect the reality in our lives” (Kilbourne Killing Us Softly). These images and ideals can eventually take toll on how a woman views and feels about

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