Sesame Street… I Think You Love My Hair

I hadn’t seen this until a friend of mine shared it with me this morning. I got a little teary just thinking about how great an impact this could have on little girls. I would have loved to see this as a tot. I hated my hair for a very long time, and I still battle sometimes when looking in the mirror and then at the television.

At any rate, check out this amazing article from Ivy Onyeador, a senior in Yale Col­lege and staff writer for Yale’s feminist magazine Broad Recognition. I couldn’t say it any better if I tried.  She says,

Over the past year, pop­u­lar media has rolled out a slew of arti­cles and news spe­cials attack­ing black women, in par­tic­u­lar trum­pet­ing sta­tis­tics about low mar­riage rates. Arti­cle after arti­cle with titles like “Mar­riage eludes high-achieving black women”, “Sin­gle black women being urged to date out­side race”, “Why can‘t a suc­cess­ful black woman find a man?” and sim­ply “Blacks strug­gle with 72 per­cent unwed moth­ers rate” attempted to explain the “unmar­riage­able” black woman’s rela­tion­ship strug­gles. Expla­na­tions included the gen­der dis­par­ity in higher edu­ca­tion between black men and women, with far fewer black men grad­u­at­ing from insti­tutes of higher edu­ca­tion; “uppity” atti­tudes as a result this gap, sup­pos­edly result­ing in an unwill­ing­ness to cater to black men; a reluc­tance to date out­side their race and so on. The media assault went as far as to claim that half of all black women have her­pes! It was later dis­cov­ered that the sta­tis­tic actu­ally referred to the per­cent­age of black women in their sam­ple that had been exposed to the her­pes virus. By this point how­ever, the dam­age had been done, panic, shame and con­fu­sion erupted, and it’s unclear whether the clar­i­fy­ing piece received  as much atten­tion as the orig­i­nal statistic

 This is excerpted from At the “Whipping” Block: Popular Media and the Black Woman.   

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