The truth is that a lot of us (and this includes Black women) mistakenly think we love Black women.
We think we love Black women because we enjoy some Black women aesthetically. Or because we like Strong Black Women around us who don’t remember that they are human and deserving of love and instead pour all of their love into us. We want the “you is kind, you is smart” routine and expect it.
We looooove body parts: the Saartjie Baartman ass. We like the “ebony” section in pornography. We love mammies. We are fascinated by Jezebels and use their image as the blueprint for “deviant” sexuality (see Miley Cyrus). We love the Queens and the sistas which of course means that we hate the thot’s and the hos.
But we think we love Black women.
We love the Black women who fall in love with men, get married, and have kids (in that order). We love the Black women who have degrees but ain’t too independent. We love the “she got her own” Black women as long as they don’t emasculate the man.
And we love the Black woman who is behind us. We are wary of the ones beside us. And we hate the ones ahead of us. Because there’s only room for ONE successful Black woman.
We think we love Black women because there’s a few who we think are good role models. And we spend the rest of our time explaining why the rest of the Black women are not. We think we love Black women because we hate twerking. Because we hate slang. Because we hate Real Wives and Scandal. Because we give “tough love” and quote Steve Harvey and Tyrese.
We think we love Black women. But we don’t know the first thing about love. We are still buried in white supremacy and patriarchy.
We don’t know how to escape and we’re not even sure that we want to. Because we don’t know if we have the spirit and the energy to truly love Black womanhood in its multi-faceted and complete nature. We believe in tokenism: there’s room in our hearts to love a few.
But that’s not true. It is easier and freer to love without contingency. It is the beginning of a powerful self-love which would translate into genuine political and social power.
|—||excerpt from “The Lupita Nyong’o Experience: Thoughts on Learning How to Love Black Womanhood" @ One Black Girl. Many Words. (via daniellemertina)|