Lupita Nyong’o vs Alicia Keys: Black Beauty Standard

Nyongo..

What is beauty? Many say that beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Therefore anyone can come up with their own definition of beauty.  I can agree with that to a certain extent. We all have our own personal like and dislikes.  But in a male dominated society the beauty of a woman is very important.  There are many good looking men in the world but it only carries you so far as a man.  But for women their beauty can open many doors for them.  A man is usually judged by his financial status.  It’s ultimately about what is his income and can he be a provider.  There are many women who have college degrees and make a lot of money nowadays.  But for the most part women are still judged by their beauty.  Their beauty is seen as social capital.  Not only is our society dominated by men…but also dominated by Europeans.  This makes things doubly hard for black/African women.  The woman in the picture above is actress Lupita Nyong’o.  Over the last few years she has taken Hollywood by storm. Lupita is an African woman.  She was born in Mexico and raised in Kenya.  She has been praised for her acting ability most notably the film 12 Years a Slave.  Which he won an Academy award for.  But she has also been praised for her beauty.  When I first saw her in an interview back in 2013 I thought she was a stunning beauty.  She had a beautiful smile,full lips and smooth dark chocolate skin. She has a very asymmetrical face. Her beauty seems almost otherworldly.  I was somewhat surprised that the media was giving her so much praise.  The white media rarely gives praise to a black woman with her skin tone and features. I haven’t seen this since maybe Lauryn Hill. Lauryn was a close second by the way.  I almost picked her for this post. But it was praise that was well deserved.  Although I find her gorgeous there are far more light skinned/biracial women that get more praise in the media.

Alicia..

Which brings me to singer/actress Alicia Keys.  Many black men I’ve talked to say that Alicia Keys is a beautiful woman. She’s not a bad looking woman at all.  But I’ve heard people say that she is a great representation of a beautiful black woman. This is a serious problem in the black community.  The problem is that Alicia Keys is biracial/mixed. She has a  white mother. The issue is really not about Alicia Keys.  I’m just using her as an example.  It’s more about what she represents. And I’ve heard other people say that actresses like Paula Patton,Halle Berry,Stacey Dash,Zendaya Coleman,Zoe Kravitz,Tracee Ellis Ross,Thandie Newton and Carmen Ejogo ..described as beautiful black women.  Even though they are all biracial women. This is the problem with the black beauty standard. And this is what needs to change. We have to be honest about this.

This video by Youtuber Chrissie explains the problem of biracial women getting so much shine.  Many of them get offended and upset when this reality is pointed out.  The reality is that a women like Alicia Keys should not be the representative of black beauty.  Every race and ethnic group has it’s own standard.  Whites have a standard and Asians have their standard.  When a woman is part Chinese and part African,the Chinese  do not accept that woman as their standard of beauty.  They will say she’s mixed race and in most cases most Asians don’t accept them as Asian at all.  So why is it so different with black people? Why do black people so willingly accept biracial women as OUR standard of beauty?

LN2..

As far as an African standard of beauty I would choose Lupita. Some of you may disagree with me.  I know there are thousands of African woman I could choose from.  I have featured many of them here on my blog.  But Lupita is an easy choice considering she is in the spotlight at the moment.  I think the one-drop rule has brainwashed millions of black people.  We think anything that is lighter skinned and light eyes is a better representation of blackness.  A watered down version is better than what we really look like.  There are millions of dark skinned and brown skinned black women who never make it big in the acting or modeling world.  And the few that do are not seen as “classic beauties”.  They are always seen as the “exotic other”.  Much the same way many whites in Hollywood look at Lupita.  But I really don’t care what racist whites think.  I’m more concerned about what we think and how we feel about each other.  We can no longer let the pseudoscience of the one drop rule over us anymore. We should be able to create our own standard of beauty.  We should not let another group of people dictate to us what should be considered attractive.

LupitaN..

It’s okay if people disagree with me.  But who would you choose?  Name three women you think would be a good representation of black beauty. They can be actresses,models,singers etc.  What is African beauty? What should black beauty look like? What women would represent it the best?

Biracial Women are the Most Beautiful(and other myths)

This is a video from the talk show The Real.  It’s a silly gabfest with five women as the hosts.  One Asian woman,a Hispanic and a biracial woman.  As well as an overweight dark skinned woman and a black woman with a bad weave.  In this video clip they interview biracial actress Grace Gealey. Gealey stars on the hit drama Empire. I’m sure you’ve heard of the show. The show that promotes homosexuality,colorism,lesbians,murder and black degradation.  Well anyway in this clip Gealey says that she is from the Cayman Islands.  She claims that in the islands they don’t really look at color.  They pay more attention to culture. Really??  I think she’s lying or incredibly naïve.  The system of white supremacy is a global system.  I find it hard to believe that color is not an issue in the Cayman Islands. The reality is she benefits from being biracial.  It’s one the main reasons  she probably got the part on Empire.  She benefits from not being “too black” so to speak.  She has that exotic look that many producers are looking for.  And she’s not the only one who is capitalizing off of the erasure of black women. It seems every time I turn on the television there seems to be a biracial/mixed race woman staring at me. I see them in commercials,sitcoms,reality shows and dramas. They are all over social media like Facebook,Instagram and Twitter.  Many are trying to be models or break into acting.   And many are becoming famous in the process. Of course they are everywhere because the media wants us to believe they are a better version of black people.  If they have light eyes,white features,light skin and long straight hair…they are deemed worthy of being called beautiful.  Yes there are some attractive biracial women.  I went to school with some in college and I have many co-workers that are biracial.  They have always been around me. Even as a kid in grade school.  Some of them got picked on by the black girls and I never understood it.  But as I got older it makes more sense.  The black girls never felt beautiful in a white racist society.  So I guess they saw the light skinned mixed girls with light eyes and long hair and felt jealous.  And I have heard many biracial women talk about people believing they are all conceited and vain.  Of course they are not all this way.  But I can see why many biracial women would believe they are the cream of the crop.  The white controlled media helps to push this myth.

The media reinforces the belief that they are better because they are usually not dark skinned and more African looking.  This video above hits on a great point about black women stepping up and not letting biracial women steal their shine.  I totally agree with her in the video.  I have seen some pretty biracial women but they are not any prettier than black women.  And many are playing in roles as the wives and girlfriends of black men.  Many times the fact that they are biracial is never even brought up at all.  Some of you may not be aware that  they are biracial. There’s been an abundance of them lately.

Tessa

In the film Creed,biracial actress Tessa Thompson played the girlfriend of Michael B. Jordan. Tessa also was in the horrible film Dear White People. That film could’ve been so much better.

Amber

Biracial actress Amber Stevens plays a girlfriend on the sitcom The Carmichael Show. In real life Amber is married to a white guy…but I digress.

Amandla

Teenage actress Amandla Stenberg is biracial.  She also recently came out as bisexual. Gay agenda being pushed?? You decide.

Westbrooks

BET is poison for black minds anyway. But they have a reality show called The Westbrooks.  It’s a reality show about a bunch of biracial Instagram “stars”. It follows them around during their daily lives. Yes…more mind pollution.

Yara

Teenage actress Yara Shahidi is half black and half Iranian.  She is on the buffoonish sitcom Blackish.

JurneeThis is a picture from the upcoming series Underground. It stars actress Jurnee Smollett Bell. She has a Jewish father and black mother. On a side note, aren’t you tired of the same old slave narrative? White Hollywood always has to remind us of our slave past.

Sharon

Actress Sharon Leal is half black and half Filipino. As you can see they are not always half black/half white. Sometimes they will be part Asian or Hispanic as well. But of course she always plays just a “black” woman.

Gugu

Actress Gugu Mbatha-Raw is half black/half white. She has become very popular the last few years.  She’s been on a lot of magazine covers. Some critics say she is the “new Halle Berry”.  Really??  Where is the new Cicely Tyson?  The new Angela Bassett? The new Lauryn Hill??  Hollywood isn’t looking for those type anymore. They don’t want too many dark skinned,full lipped,African textured haired women in Hollywood.  The dark skinned authentic African looking woman must be put in the back so that the mixed race/biracial woman can shine as her rightful replacement.  The biracial women are closer to white so they are looked at as a better representation of blackness.

"Eclipsed" Opening Night

Over the last couple of years more African looking women have been getting more press.  Most recently actresses like Lupita Nyongo and Danai Gurira(pictured above),Gabrielle Union,Viola Davis and Tika Sumpter have gotten more roles on television and film.  But there is still a large abundance of biracial/mixed women all over the media.  They are still usually the women seen as desirable in films.  And mostly play the wives and girlfriends to black men.  I think Hollywood is very afraid the dark skinned African looking woman.  They are doing their best to suppress her beauty.  They feel a woman  who actually looks like an authentic African is a threat to the European ideal beauty standard. This is what the racist white media really fear.  They want to see someone who is lighter skinned,light colored eyes and looks like they might have one white parent. This is why you see more women who look like Alicia Keys than Luptia Nyongo.  But the reality is we need more Lupita’s. I want black women to embrace their beauty.  And ignore the lies of the media.  You are beautiful without having to be watered down.  And you don’t need a weave or be mixed.  You are beautiful without any European additives. You are the Original Mother of the planet. You are the TRUE standard of beauty!  Do not let anyone tell you different.

Sista