Kola Boof Speaks: Race & Beauty In America
I was challenged by a white Professor and a White student (separately) at Cornell College in IOWA to explain my "comments" about BEAUTY in America.....and how these STANDARDS effect black women and the black community.
The WHITE STAFF and I were in total disagreement, but I think you will truly appreciate reading this.
Here is what I said by Speaker Phone--my statement was Pre-written:
First of all...just like "race"--"beauty" is a social construct.
But COLOR is not a social construct.
Therefore, before you can understand "beauty"....you must understand "status" and the fact that STATUS...overrules beauty.
For instance, no matter how beautiful the lips are on Lauryn Hill and Angela Bassett....those lips gain STATUS once you put them on Angelina Jolie.
No matter how magnificent and superior Phyllis Yvonne Stickney's rear end is...a smaller version of her rear end is celebrated and gains STATUS once you attach it to Jennifer Lopez.
No matter how lovely the "tan" is on Jennifer Beales....that tan aquires STATUS once it appears on a white woman, and is especially valuable....because it's TEMPORARY on a white woman and does not pass into the womb to color the child.
The White-skinned beauty of JAPANESE...is given STATUS and considered superior...although the dark-skinned KOREAN and THAI are in actuality...far more beautiful and better built. Still, STATUS overrules Beauty.
In communities of Color---Whiteness alone often makes a woman beautiful, no matter how FAT she is, no matter how many teeth are missing or PLAIN she is---whiteness itself is beauty, because it carries the ultimate STATUS.
That's Number one.
Toni Morrison said that a "Paradise" or a "Utopia" can only be made into such by defining those things which are to be excluded--therefore making it a paradise.
Those in charge, with power and who rule are the architects deciding exactly what the paradise will be, which is why a very dark skinned black woman in EUROPE is considered beautiful, desirable and "visible" in media.....while the opposite is true in the United States, because of rigid STATUS perimeters that must adhere to the history and goals of the country.
As a pre-concept related to the outcome of this opinion, please note that "sexism" cannot dominate a society unless the majority of the citizens (both male and female) are...sexist. Both the father and the mother reinforce, through daily living, the tenets of "sexism", passing it into the children as "acculturation"---thereby making it a mode of thought that is normal, where as the idea of "equality" between sexes is given lip service but is not truly considered...normal. And that is because, most people on both sides are sexists. Not just men. The religions and churches and the Bible itself back up the sexist ideology of the society and confirms that the systematic structures of Patriarchy are not just correct---but are "natural".
Man is to be valued and his humanity is protected....Woman, while loved emotionally, is expendable and her humanity is recognized only as a subtext for his birth.
Everyone in the society, male and female, supports this ideology because it's "natural order."
Ditto for White Supremacist Ideology.
America is a nation that originally was supposed to be a "paradise/utopia" for White Europeans and was founded and built on slavery--an institution that was justified through very strict principles of White Supremacist Ideology. Black African slaves were brought here and deemed to be only 3/5ths of a human being.
A single drop of their blood has the power to compromise whiteness....and because of this, and because White men greatly enjoyed the freedom of being able to rape their property (just as any man would, including the Africans who do the same thing to slaves), the Whites realized that they would have to create a STANDARD by which Whiteness would always be PRO-CREATED and PROTECTED under the normative tenet of "purity". For more on that, just read the Dictionary Definition for Black (evil/ugly) and then read the Dictionary Definition for White (good/clean).
This is why, regardless of Sexism, "White Supremacy" benefits White Females just as much (in fact, more) than it benefits White Males.
And THE REASON...that White Supremacy benefits White Females more is because in order for a White Male to be born...he can only do it from a White Female.
People of color, however, can be born from any female (although, Authentic Black People going by the Pre-Colonial African standard, cannot be born from a Non-African tribe).
So this genetic fact forces the White Male to elevate the White Female as the World Standard for Pro-Creation.....because out of her comes....(A) White Males, (B) White Acculturation of all those who born from her, including coloreds.....which in turn, because of the genetic weakness of White Blood, sets her as the ultimate White Power STATUS symbol, being motherseed of the White Race and its only way into existence.
As well.....MARRIAGE and HAVING A MAN....is the highest STATUS for all races of females, for without it----the sexist societies worldwide consider them to be "deformed", and therefore, when a White woman marries out of her race---she is trading one STATUS for another STATUS.
On the other side of the Spectrum is The Black Man...who has been conquered and dominated by the White Man (both Arab and European) for so many centuries that the Black Man now has no memory of his worth or beauty---purely as himself. He has been acculturated by his masters and lives in a world where he has very, very little power---except over the Black Women (who create him) and the Black Children (who come from him).
Because COLOR is not a social construct----but race is---the Blacker the Black Man's Skin, the more Authentic he is.....then.....the less STATUS he has in a world that agrees that "Whiteness" is normal and superior and more HUMAN than all others.
**Beauty is the second social construct (after race)....it backs up White Supremacy (and this is worldwide, because in Arab Nations, those Orange Skinned Arabs are classified on their identification cards as "White"--the same for Japanese and Chinese and Brazilians and Argentinians and Mexicans. EVERY SOCIETY...has a White Elite at the top that calls itself "White").
If you go to a Black Nation in Africa...and especially visit Black Americans and West Indians...you will find that a "Mulatto" mixed Status Symbol has been created to sit at the TOP of those various people to represent their version of "Whiteness", "the Elite". While the Very darkest charcoal and Blue Black blacks----the Authentic blacks----are relegated to the bottom rung and "disallowed" as the Representative Face to be presented to the world, because the darker they are----the less STATUS they have and the less HUMAN they are considered.
This is the reason why Black Men will pass over a Beautiful Chocolate Skinned Black Woman to marry an Unattractive, Fat White Woman or an Ugly "High Yellow" Black Woman....because....the lighter the woman's skin is, the lighter the man's children will come out and the more STATUS he will aquire through the woman's Whiteness (regardless of what color she is). No matter how beautiful a very black skinned woman is---her beauty has no STATUS, because her beauty only creates more blackness.
Let's use this example:
Vivica Fox is considered a dark skinned woman in America. But if you put her next to Phyllis Yvonne Stickney, Vivica is suddenly 8 shades lighter and has less Africoid facial features. She, therefore, becomes the woman considered more desirable---because she has more STATUS. Or think of Cicely Tyson's beauty...then think of Diahann Carroll's beauty, and although I personally find Cicely's African beauty exquisite and superior....Americans will find the lighter brown skin and European features/hairstyles of Diahann Carroll to carry more "STATUS".
But then add Halle Berry, who is Bi-racial and much lighter than Diahann Carroll or Vivica Fox and has straight hair and facial features that are even less black.....and now she has more STATUS.
The Color Paradigm is leveled almost exclusively towards the WOMEN in the Black and Latino and Asian races----because the men rule the societies and the men do the choosing, contrary to the claims of Matriarchy.
And let me just say that if Matriarchy were really and truly a reality in Africa...then we would not have to get our vaginas infibulated just to be "marriagable". The real truth is that Black women do not rule Black Communities, for if they did, then the power of Colorism would be greatly---greatly reduced.
The men are usually exempt from the Colorist Caste System (notice that most Black Male Sex Symbols are chocolate and brown with nappy African hair and clearly Black Features---and both the very dark skinned Male and the light skinned Male are DESIRED and considered VALUABLE by the black community). On the other hand, the Dark Skinned Black Woman (the mother of the race and the authentic origin of the race) is almost never embraced as the standard of beauty or desirability and is the Least Valued image in the black community....and this is mainly because she is the one who makes black people BLACK in the first place. It is her womb, genes and especially--her acculturation----that TAKES AWAY the people's STATUS by making them "truly black".
Therefore, a Mulatto or Bi-racial mixed FEMALE is risen as the Standard of Beauty---because she makes the black people LESS BLACK and gives them STATUS by giving them lighter skin, watered down facial features and a straighter texture of hair. She helps to bring "whiteness" to the group....and for this, they appoint her over their real mother.
A White Woman can make them even Whiter....thereby delivering even more STATUS.
These same exact dynamics are used in Latin cultures, Asian cultures...worldwide. In other words, women are not seeking a "common goal"--that's bullshit. What women are trying to seek is the worldwide Hollywood Goal that they have internalized from more than a century of film, magazine and literary images. Please notice that before the advent of Silent Films....women were prized for being very round, full figured and brunette......and most people had very LOCAL ideals about what was beautiful, their conclusions reached by their own cultural tastes and traditions and mostly...by their desire to see their own looks reproduced in the offspring of their kind. Which, in actuality, is what real beauty might be.
But the Hollywood beauty standard is dictated now to the PLANET via MEDIA. Mass Media. Which has become the most powerful weapon that America has to charm, solicit and influence the rest of the world in its quest for dominance and survival.
White Supremacy is the root and stimulus of that weapon...because the vast majority of the world is colored, and therefore, the Whites must brainwash other races into valuiing and worshipping whiteness----so that they won't want to destroy it, but rather protect and covet it.
The One Drop Rule in America is proof of those fears...and as well....validity.
Increasingly, as more and more black men are now allowed to mate outside their race, there are many Black Women in America who are so dark skinned and African featured that they're not even considered women .....and I've met many, many extremely dark skinned African looking black women who have forced themselves to become lesbians---so that they can know love----and they are devastated by it, but NOBODY...and especially not Black People give a @#%$.
White and other races of Light Skinned Straight Haired women are well aware of these dynamics....and overwhelmingly support them....because this allows the low self-esteem in White and other races of Light Skinned women to be assauged and placated by the self-hatred of Black and other Dark races of men. It also gives these women a Surplus of available men, and because MARRIAGE and HAVING A MAN is the highest "STATUS" for a woman-----these women trade in their color status to attain the status of marriage/having a man. In general, White and other races of Light Skinned women do not care, truly, about black people---and especially don't care about black women---and delude themselves into noble, romanticized ideals of "true love", "the evil non-worthy black woman with attitude" and "opposites attracting". In other words, they support and protect the White Supremacist Beauty Aesthetic.....because it benefits and favors them.
In closing, let me just say:
Black Is Beautiful.