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Colorism Essay

413 words - 2 pages

Colorism: The present reality and its continuing impact on the Black community

Purpose Statement/Theses
To bring awareness of “Colorsim” to the community and educators of young black Americans; this practice of self oppression within the black community is often overlooked and is an internal form of racism causing continued hindrance to progression of the black community in society.
Statement of Qualification:
This topic wasn’t as important to me until I watched the episode on CNN titled “Who is Black in America?” by Soledad O’Brien. I am a dark skinned black man married to a white woman, we have ...view middle of the document...

This practice developed during slavery as a method to place a value on ones skin tone. The use of colorsim set an internal superiority amongst slaves [ (Hunter, 2007) ]. This practice has carried on through generations and is learned by young black adolescents. The practice of colorsim favors lighter skin over darker skin [ (International Encyclopedia of Social Sciences, 2012) ]. Colorism is a common setback within the black community which is evidenced through history. According to International Encyclopedia of social sciences (2008) such groups existed as the Blue Vein Society, a black-created social club which excluded darker skinned blacks because you could not see their veins through the skin. We have all heard of the paper bag test where you had to put your skin up to the bag; if it was darker than the bag you were not accepted into organizations or clubs. Many do not take this issue seriously and do not realize the effect it leaves on a person’s self image. Educating the young black community on the issue of colorism and how non important such a characteristic is to how one performs and benefits in society. The skin tone of one should not define how beautiful, smart, wealthy, or happy someone can be. It is proven in many studies that lighter African Americans are afforded better opportunities when it comes to income, education, housing, and the marriage market [ (Hunter, 2007) ].

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