In case you missed it Oprah Winfrey has recently made it her mission to talk about the long going debate in the African-American community about color-ism! Red Bone this Red Bone that, but what about that brown girls? Lately India Arie received tons of backlash when she released her single artwork for her new song “Cocoa Butter”. On the cover she appeared a few shades lighter, and Arie said she wanted to look “Golden”! Check out what she had to say!
India.Arie: I’m not used to that. People who have been my fans over the years have been so respectful that I almost feel like, ‘Wait a minute y’all, I’m not all that.’ At first [it didn’t effect me at all], I was just excited. And then [when people started cursing me], that is when I got upset. It wasn’t about the thing, it was the fact that you think you could talk to anyone like that. It was like, what makes you think you can talk to me like that? I’m still dumbfounded by [people thinking I lightened my skin].”
Oprah: It’s because the album cover…I mean, I know what good lighting can do so you look kind of golden-y compared to, let’s say, the first album cover. Wouldn’t you say?
India.Arie: Mmhm. That was my intention. And this is not my album cover, it’s my single cover. I don’t know what they’re gonna say about the album cover, we’ll see. What I wanted was to have gold skin. If you see, the dress is gold fabric, it’s metallic fabric, and the backdrop is metallic. I just wanted for it to glow and be luminous, not light, luminous. For me, there’s that conversation where women’s bodies are just unpacked for entertainment. Bikini body, postbaby body, mom boobs and all the stuff that they say. For me it was stepping out there and allowing myself to be beautiful and sensual and powerful and strong and athletic and womanly and all that stuff and just letting it be seen. Showing some skin. Showing my thigh muscles. That was my intention. I wasn’t trying to look light, I was trying to look luminous.
Oprah: And so when you all shot that photograph with the gold background, it was lit in order to make you look luminous. It wasn’t, ‘I’m trying to lighten my skin.’
India.Arie: Right. And that’s what’s hard for me to understand. I have more clarity about it now, and it’s really the black community of course because this color-ism conversation lives in the black community[…]There’s two conversations for me. The color-ism conversation- this is my prayer – what I would love to see happen is that I find the perfect words or the perfect song to sing or to say to people that will heal a big part of this conversation in the black community, because really, it’s about self-worth.
Yes your right Ms. Arie it is about self worth because if you listen to every rap song all this (brown skin) male rappers talk about is light skin this, red bone, this to the point where I hear white girls call their selves “red bone”! WTF! Oprah’s “Dark Girls” documentary may shed some light on the situation (no pun intended), but will it help it ! I doubt it it! All this color-ism stems back from slavery, and we are the new slaves (in the words of Yeezy), so this debate will NEVER end unfortunately!
But I’m a brown skin girl, and in the sun my skin turn reddish brown, and I love it! Carry on and tell us what you think!
Will it ever end?