Posts filed under ‘Colourism’

Being Biracial: Videos

Here are the videos I promised about being biracial from a different perspective.
These are from people who see it as negative and [like I mentioned in the post ] deny one side of themselves due to some of the reasons I listed.

Preconceived Notions About Race

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

Part 4

Part 5

This one is just shocking
http://www.worldstarhiphop.com/videos/video.php?v=wshh1s789DJjzH2Z3qG5

Advertisements

January 12, 2010 at 7:46 pm Leave a comment

Being Biracial

Biracial is defined as someone who has parents from two races; for instance they may have a black mother and a white father, or an asian mother and a black father etc. [I’ll mainly be talking about those who are mixed with black and white, but there’ll also be mentions of other mixes]

People are used to being categorized as one race, and in a country like America, there has been rules to keep things that way; the most common being the One Drop Rule. It stated that if you were partially black (whether you’re 1/2, 1/4. 1/8 or even 1/16) you were still considered black. This meant that even if someone looked white but had a black great grandmother, they would be considered black and at the time, not be accepted by the white race [in America] It’s because of such rules that there have been constant debates on what to classify biracial people like Halle Berry, Lou Jing and Barack Obama.

As well as black people having various complexions, certain aspects can come out stronger from one parent, meaning biracial people vary in appearance. Believe it or not, the following people are all of the same mix (one black parent & one white parent):

Jael (ANTM contestant)    Emily King (Singer)

Charley Uchea                                     Slash (Musician)
(Big Brother UK Contestant)

Lenny Kravitz (Singer)              Rashida Jones (Quincy Jones’ daughter)

As you can see, some of them look mixed while others only look black (Charley Uchea) or only look white (Jael or Rashida Jones). Although I’m not biracial myself, I know many people who are. While many of them embrace both of the races, just as many prefer one half of themselves, leading them to be ashamed of the other half if not deny it completely.

This could be for many reasons [not only with those I know, but generally], one is discrimination they face from friends and even family. Many within the black community automatically dislike them for stupid reasons; they assume that those who are biracial think they are better than them because their skin is lighter etc. when most of the time, that is not true.

Many within the white and Asian community don’t approve of biracial people, especially if they’re half black, and they’re not afraid to admit it. That’s how derogatory terms such as “half breed” developed (just look at what happened to Lou Jing)

Another reason is their perceptions of the denied race is based on either a bad experience or stereotypes. Say a biracial girl (black and white) was only in contact with the white side of her family and the only exposure to black people she had was the negative perceptions of us as rapists, gangsters, drug dealers etc. through the media. Not only could she deny her black side, but she may try and do anything she can when she’s older to not associate herself with black people, even if that means talking in a certain way, listening to a certain type of music, or even straightening her hair and bleaching her skin to look more white.

She may even be forced to deny one side. On the Tyra Banks show singer Kimberley Locke spoke about how in High School her black friends tried to make her choose one side of her as they believed she couldn’t be both black and white. Although she refused to choose between the two, that’s unfortunately not the case for many other biracial people in the same position. Many are proud of only one when they really should be proud of both. Being biracial doesn’t make them “dirty” or “unpure”, if anything it makes them more diverse and unique.
If they’re surrounded by those who don’t accept them for who they are, then they’re not the people they should associate with, there are millions of people out there who will embrace their mixed heritage.

January 10, 2010 at 4:35 pm Leave a comment

The Proof Is In The Pudding

After writing the “OMG White Beauty!!” post a while ago, a had a few people thinking that such things going on in certain minorities didn’t happen. They didn’t feel that the things I went into brief detail of was “hard evidence” that these things went on
….Well here’s the hard evidence. This Channel 4 Documentary focuses on people from various ethnic groups trying to look more whiter in appearence, as they feel it is more attractive and more acceptable. However it’s not just media based. If you watch the video you’ll see them explain other things that have happened to them in the past [and even now] that make them want to Westernize their appearence.
By watching this, I hope that people try to stop it rather than encourage this kind of thing to carry on.

Remember, the media’s idea of beauty does NOT correspond with my own. [i.e light skin, light eyes, long hair etc].
I do not wish to be white or look more Western in appearance because that’s not the way I naturally am.
As insecure as I can be, it has NO RELATION to my race. Out of all the things I’ll be unhappy about appearance wise, that will not be one of them.

While I think there is nothing wrong with those features, I don’t think it defines beauty as a whole. Yes that can be beautiful too, but beauty comes in every colour, race, hair texture, eye shape, body shape etc. I just wish the people in this documentary could realise that and love themselves the way they naturally are.

http://www.worldstarhiphop.com/videos/video.php?v=wshhbwgeAR5mddmM0c3m

December 6, 2009 at 8:13 pm Leave a comment

Skinny Over “Fat”, Blondes Over Brunettes && Light Skin Over Dark…The Affect It Has

It happens in almost every high school; where there are those certain girls (and boys) who get more attention from others. They get treated better, they are the ones a lot of people like and get called pretty/hot; they are popular…because of the way they look.

It’s either the skinny blonde girls, or maybe even the light skinned ones with long curly hair and green eyes in the black/asian community. Though the features can vary depending on where you are, they are overall pretty much the same. These girzoe-saldana-1-0509-lgls [like stated before] are popular, get on well with more people, and are generally treated better by people in comparison to others, because of their appearance. They are put on a pedastool and are praised, get more attention from people [especially boys] and are always reminded of how pretty they look or how they are beautiful. They are the ones that people always want to be around.

To some of us, they are great, and outside of these certain girls (or boys) no one else matters. We feel the need/want to always be around and with them and [sometimes] give them our undivided attention.

Most of us treat people like this subconsciously. Some will never realize that they are favoring those girls over the rest based on their appearence. Some are aware of it and openly tell others [for example] that they’re not pretty or good enough because they don’t look like these girls. Some think about it a bit, but not too much because in their mind, that’s just the way things should be.

Whatever the thought is we are all guilty of it. I admit, though I never thought badly of dark skinned black girls etc… I used to treat blonde [white] or light skinned black/asian girls better than others because at that age (I was about 10-11), I was convinced that they were better, but I never knew why…. they just were.

Now I realise I thought that because of society. With almost everyone in the media having those features and being treated so well by others, society made me believe that’s what was right [look wise] above everything else. It made me think that in order to be accepted that’s what you had to look like. And while I didn’t wish to look like that myself, I felt the need to treat anyone who did better than everyone else.

Thankfully, I got out of that mindset and realised that while it could make things easier if you look like that in today’s world, you’ll still be accepted if you don’t. I also realized that those people aren’t always going to be treated like that, because not everyone will necessarily like them solely based on their looks [not everyone;s that shallow]. Also because like many things, their looks will fade, meaning so will the attention that came with it.

I could go further into this, [I think I’ll save that for another post], but I want to end it by saying that in this day and age where beauty comes in many different forms, colours and shapes, it’s our job as people to not favour the skinny green eyed blondes for instance over others. Though we many not have started it, it should be our priority to end it.

May 17, 2009 at 7:48 pm 2 comments

OMG White Beauty!! (originally written on 5th October 2008)

The white man’s idea of “beauty” in women has had an impact on everyone (and not necessarily in a good way); it has been something that has developed over the years, but roughly being the same each time. The following factors are what are said to make a woman beautiful, based on the white man’s/woman’s standards in the media:
– Long, light coloured hair
– Light coloured, empty looking eyes
– Thin Body
– Pale (sometimes tanned) skin

While this look is natural to some, there are many people who have strived (and still do) to get this look or something similar. What makes it sad is that through history, it has changed how almost every other race sees beauty, even today.

Take African Americans for instance. Once stolen from their land by Europeans and shipped to what we now know as America, the slaves that had a lighter skin tone or Caucasian blood in them due to interracial rape by the white man, were favoured more compared to the slaves of a darker natural tone. Although this happened hundreds of years ago, the light skinned/dark skinned issue has still had an affect on not just a majority of African Americans in the United States, but also black people across the globe, whether it’s in the UK, France or even parts of Africa itself. It has gotten so extreme to the point where some of us feel the need to straighten our hair with harmful chemicals, wear coloured contact lenses that aren’t even our natural colour, and sometimes even bleach our skin to make it lighter, because its said to be “beautiful”; Something that some black celebrities have undergone to “fit into” the mainstream entertainment industry.

Not only has it affected some females in places like Africa, but Asia too. It is very popular now for some Asian women in places like Japan, China, Singapore, or even North America to wear tape, glue or even have surgery done on their eyes to make them look more like Westerners, because it’s considered to be pretty and more attractive . If you went to one of these Asian countries such as Korea, you’d find that the most common form of surgery over there is the type done on a person’s eyes to make them look less Asian and more Caucasian
Not only this, but it’s common
for Asian women to wear coloured contacts of colours like green, blue or grey that are said to make the eyes look bigger, (i.e. more Western).

Even in places like India or Pakistan, you are only considered beautiful if you bleach your skin, wear coloured contacts, and dye your hair light colours like blonde; colours that are generally unnatural for people from Asia. Take a look at actresses in Bollywood; a lot (if not all of them) have gone under the process of dying their hair, wearing coloured contact lenses and bleaching their skin; some have done it to the point where they are at times, mistaken to be a Caucasian woman. ——->

These ideas and perceptions of what beauty is meant to be has been planted into some peoples minds so badly, that they pass these false perceptions onto younger generations. A good example of this being done can be seen by the author Constance Briscoe.
In her book “Ugly”, she talks at one point how he
r mother would always tell her when growing up how she thought her lips were too big, her nose was too wide and how her skin was too dark; something that affected her in a big way, as later on in her life she got a nose job and lip reduction.

So where did these ideas of beauty come from? Well a large portion of today’s ideas clearly come from the media. Everyday we see images of women/young girls who have at least one or two of the factors of “beauty” listed at the beginning of this post; and because these women in the media don’t really look like an average female you’d find walking down the street, some of us just assume that they are the beautiful ones, that they are the ones that are truly pretty, and that we have to look like them and not the other way round…a lot of people don’t see some of the evil behind the media around us and the false perceptions it makes…

Especially in places like Asia, one of my Asian friends told me that most of the advertisements you see around you consist of women from the Western world with blonde hair, blue eyes and a thin, boyish figure; and the few Asian women you do see in the media over their usually have had surgery to change their eye shape and wear contacts to change their natural colour…something that leads not just Asian women to become insecure about the way they naturally are, but also any other ethnicity that doesn’t fit this fake image of “beauty”, and is one of the reasons that women do these things to themselves in the first place, because of what they see around them…

Like mentioned before, these false standards of “white beauty” affect the way other races see themselves, if not the actual white race at some points too. I go to a predominately white school at the moment, if you were to go there and look at the girls that are considered beautiful, hot, pretty or whatever you want to call it, you’ll find that many of them have blonde/light coloured hair that often passes their shoulders, light eyes and are usually quite thin. And because I don’t look like this, at times I feel that I‘m being judged by others in the school community based on my appearance…not only does this apply to me, but to anyone else there that doesn’t live up to these shallow expectations…

I also experienced this in my last school before coming to Switzerland. Even though the school students were mainly people of colour, the girls who were of mixed heritage with the paler skin tone that had more European blood in them were favoured over other black or Asian girls who didn’t.
I know this because I was o
ne of those girls who didn’t have as much white in them, who didn’t straighten their hair with chemicals, and whose skin tone wasn’t more on the pale side; and because of this, I was at one point considered ugly. It wasn’t until I wore contacts that changed my eye colour and put extensions in my hair that made it look more straight and European, that more people looked at me in a different way and considered me pretty. This is something I regret doing, as I did it thinking (at the time) I’d be excepted more from other people…and even though I was for a short period of time, I was still trying to portray this image that wasn’t truly me, an image of myself that was fake. It wasn’t until my Mum told me to stop with the grey contacts etc. because I wasn’t white, and that things like that weren’t natural on our people, that I opened my eyes a bit more…it was then that I accepted myself more and stopped trying to be something I’m clearly not…

So what about the rest of us that have accepted ourselves?? Why should we feel self conscious about our looks?? Why should we try and compare ourself to this so called image of “beauty” or “perfection” when it’s probably an image based on self consciousness itself. This perception of “white beauty” is false; some white people might just be saying that they are the most beautiful people, because they are in fact the most insecure; something they try to solve or cover up by indirectly telling almost every other race out there that they’re inferior compared to the Western world through things like the media, and that in order to be beautiful and to be accepted in today’s society that they must look more Western

What about people like me who have embraced their ethnicity, like the way they are and choose not to alter or change anything about that…does that make us ugly?! Who are you to say that people that choose not to look like most girls in the media aren’t beautiful too…

While the media aren’t directly saying that everyone else is ugly, they are sometimes giving that impression to other people who don’t look like most girls on TV; when the truth is, the women pictured above (as well as many other women) are beautiful too. The media clearly doesn’t realise that beauty comes in more than one form, shape, colour or size, otherwise more realistic looking people like them would be shown in it more often, but sadly they’re not.

So to anyone (whether you’re black, white, Asian or anything else for that matter), who feels the need to change their features just to live up to the modern [false] standards of “beauty”, please stop now. You’re features are some of the only things that signify you from other races (whether it is your hair, your eyes, your nose, your skin etc.)…Why would you want to change that??

By trying to change/alter not just your facial features, but also things like your weight, you are becoming less of an individual and more of a clone; and worst of all, you are becoming less of the person you truly are, the person you were before you started to compare yourself to people in the media, and felt like you had to change; the truth is they are the ones that need to change, because only a very small portion of people in this world naturally look like them.

May 16, 2009 at 11:40 am 2 comments


Recent Posts