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Nardia

Brown girls do ballet

"Many of the anti-black women stereotypes originated during slavery.Long before sociologists perpetuated theories about the experience of black matriarchy, white male slave owners created a body of myths to discredit the contributions of black females; one such myth was the notion that they were all masculinized sub-human creatures.Black female slaves had shown that they were capable of performing so-called "manly" labor, that they were able to endure hardship, pain, and privation but could also perform those so called " womanly" tasks of housekeeping , cooking, and child-rearing. Their  ability to cope effectively in a sexist-defined "male" role threatened patriarchal myths about the nature of woman's inherent physiological difference and inferiority. By forcing black female slaves to perform the same work tasks as black male slaves, white ale patriarchs were contradicting their own sexist order that claimed woman to be inferior because she lacked physical prowess. An explanation had to be provided to explain why black women were able to perform tasks that were cited by patriarchs as job women were incapable of performing. To explain the black female's ability to surie without the direct aid of a male and her ability to perform tasks that were culturally defined as "male" work, white males argued that black slave women were not "real" women but were masculinized sub-human creatures." Bell Hooks "Ain't I A Woman" pg 71
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In black and white or in full color, we’re here, and we matter. Have an amazing week!!

Stop looking for black women to perform respectability before you value us!

I post, and will continue to post articles celebrating black women making moves in education, finance, and other huge areas in society, most of the time it’s to debunk people’s negative perceptions about us (I want to stop doing that though because black women shouldn’t have to prove anything), but overall I enjoy seeing it like the next black woman.

However, it’s frustrating to me that black girls and women can’t be celebrated outside of respectability like black men are.It makes me wonder do you all actually value black women, or do you only see us as worthy of respect when were performing your desired ideal of black womanhood? Because I see how some of you, or most of you, treat black women who don’t conform to your ideal of respectability, you treat them like animals and it’s not right.

None of you do black men like this. You guys make sure black men are told they’re worthy no matter if they’re successful like Obama or working at your local grocery store. Yall tell them that carefree is any type of black man, the fellas from the hood with grills and tattoos, to the black men having fun and enjoying life anywhere. Yall don’t reduce them to flower crowns,big afros and respectable appearances.

Black men are labeled “black excellence” just for existing or having fun sometimes but black women have to go above and beyond to be praised, especially in our community, which is sad because I thought this was the place black women could have the most freedom, but clearly that has never been the case.

I don’t want black girls to grow up thinking if they’re not pretty or driving a benz and living in a mansion at a certain point yet, that they’re not doing something right or they shouldn’t be valued. I don’t want them to feel like they have to filter their identity just to be accepted. White people have forced us into assimilation enough.

All excellent black girls are not Michelle Obama and that’s okay. Some black girls aren’t there yet, some black girls probably won’t ever be successful in that way, some black girls won’t meet conventional beauty standards, some black girl’s blackgirlmagic doesn’t look like Solange and that’s also okay. Some black girls grow up to be hairstylists, makeup artists, some black women strip and put themselves through school, some black girls don’t go to college but are still successful IN THEIR OWN WAY.

What I’m saying is start celebrating the average everyday black woman/girl like yall do black men and boys. Stop holding black girls to these ridiculous standards, because it makes it seem like you really don’t value black women outside of what we can perform for you.

Black women don’t exist to be your show piece after you’ve primped, primed and structured them/us to your liking. Let black women live. If you can’t then I don’t want to be apart of your black excellence or blackgirlmagic, until you erase the white supremacist way of showcasing it.

Stop promoting misogynoir.

Black female slaves had shown that they were capable of performing so-called “manly” labor, that they were able to endure hardship, pain, and privation but could also perform those so-called “womanly” tasks of housekeeping, cooking, and child rearing. Their ability to cope effectively in a sexist-defined “male” role threatened patriarchal myths about the nature of woman’s inherent physiological difference and inferiority. By forcing black female slaves to perform the same work tasks as black male slaves, white male patriarchs were contradicting their own sexist order that claimed woman to be inferior because she lacked physical prowess. An explanation had to be provided to explain why black women were able to perform tasks that were cited by patriarchs as jobs women were incapable of performing. To explain the black female’s ability to survive without the direct aid of a male and her ability to perform tasks that were culturally defined as “male” work, white males argued that black slave women were not “real” women but were masculinized sub-human creatures.
—  bell hooks, Ain’t I a Woman: Black Women and Feminism
Stop demanding women & black people perform “happiness” just to make privileged people feel comfortable

Don’t tell women to smile and don’t tell angry black people to “just be nice”

Being nice didn’t stop MLKjr from being assassinated and smiling is no guarantee a woman won’t be raped (and this doesn’t even cover the intersectionality of being a black woman - or a twoc)

The whole “why doesn’t she just smile?” or “why doesn’t that black person just explain things ‘nicely’ to people for the 50 millionth time?” are interrelated tropes frequently used in white/male supremacy to control, tone police and de-legitimize the perspectives of oppressed people. Exactly who’s needs are being addressed by smiling on demand if you do not feel like it, or being perennially “nice” about something that deeply upsets you?  (hint: not women’s needs and not black people’s needs)

That woman you’re thinking needs to smile…what if she had a really bad day, or isn’t feeling well, or just doesn’t like YOU?

And I very firmly believe that every currently “angry” black person was previously, at some point, a black person who took time out to try to nicely “explain” things (to seemingly endless groups of clueless white people demanding answers that they’ll never accept), and then finally tired of the endless performance of being “nice” to assuage white fragility

Decenter the patriarchy

Decenter whiteness

Open your mind