Fresno State Debaters Are First Black Women to Win Big

debate-black-women-worth-campaignTwo awesome young women at Fresno State University (California) made history in October winning the Henry Clay Invitational Debates in 1st and 2nd place. The young women, Nadia Lewis and Jamila Ahmed, are definitely shining. [Read more…]

“Black” Hairstyles on White Women Evoke Questions of Professionalism

white-women-black-hairstyles1Black women’s hair seems to be in the news every other day or so. How it is styled, how long it is, what its texture feels like, and so on comes up in the media so regularly that it seems like a major facet of public dialogue. Sometimes women have been fired after their traditionally “black” hairstyles caused issues for them. And, black hair continues to be a major factor in the “othering” of black women.

So, what does it mean when non-black women sport traditionally “black” hairstyles? More specifically, when professional looking middle-aged white women wear cornrows, flat twists, finger waves, and twist outs, does it have the same effect? Does it raise the same questions? [Read more…]

First Black Designer, Dom Streater, Wins ‘Project Runway’

dom-streater-project-runwayRecently, there has been a lot of press covering the dearth of people of color in high  fashion. High fashion and couture print models are predominantly white and the number of models of color has been decreasing in top fashion shows. In all, the outlook for people of color in the fashion industry seems to be a negative one. Yet, the outcome of this year’s Project Runway reality show, airing on Lifetime, is so significant because it challenges these barriers for people of color. For the first time in 12 seasons the show has its first black winner, Dom Streater. While seemingly way overdue, this is an accomplishment which highlights ongoing racial issues in the fashion industry. [Read more…]

Sheryl Underwood’s ‘Nappy Hair’ Comments Question Self-Worth

sherylunderwood7126Sheryl Underwood, well-known comedienne, actress, and co-host of The Talk, has had some interesting things to say over the years. And, as a prominent woman of color, her audience consists of many people of color. Recently, she mentioned that it made no sense to save “nappy, afro hair” when discussing Victoria Secret model Heidi Klum’s desire to save her bi-racial children’s naturally curly, kinky hair after haircuts.Underwood went on to describe the hair as “beady” and “nasty.” Many have come out against the words she supposedly used in jest. Truthfully, this seems less a question of comedy or preference and more a question of self-worth.

[Read more…]

Who’s Shining? 4-year-old Genius Anala Beevers is

Courtesy RollingOut.com

Courtesy RollingOut.com

Last week, we all met an adorable young lady named Anala Beevers. She is from New Orleans and enjoys many of the things children her age do. But, her extremely high IQ of 145, which puts her in the top 1-percent of IQ scores globally, is what makes her stand out from the crowd. This 4-year-old genius was invited to join MENSA, an exclusive “Members Only” society committed to acknowledging the scholastic aptitude of those with extremely high IQ scores.

[Read more…]

“Dark Girls” Documentary Explores Colorism, Self-Worth, and Prejudice

dark girlsThe captivating and well-received documentaryDark Girls” will be premiering on OWN this Sunday. And while the film touches on the topic of colorism, the intra-racial animus brought on by perceived worth associated with lighter variations in skin pigmentation in the black community, it also deals with social messaging, stigmas about natural hair textures, and relationships with darker women. Perhaps the most powerful aspect of the film is its authenticity as it is mainly told through firsthand accounts of “dark girls.” And, I have to say, even the preview brought up emotions for me that I had long ago believed to be gone. [Read more…]