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Being a Woman of Color in a Eurocentric Beauty Standard Society
Transcript of Being a Woman of Color in a Eurocentric Beauty Standard Society
For many decades women have battled the fashion industry's ideal body image vision --- tall and lean. Unfortunately for the majority of women around the world,
. Although the fight for equal body representation continues, an even more sinister beauty ideal remains unspoken.
In addition of many women being over a size 10, many women also happen to be minorities and there has been a giant pressure to push these women into White-European standards of beauty.
The European beauty standard is the notion that the more closely associated a person with European features, the more attractive she or he is considered. These features include light skin, straight hair, thin nose, colored eyes, etc. (Kite 2011)
First of all, what the heck does
European Beauty Standard
It's commonly seen in magazines:
Oscar-winning actress Lupita Nyong'o posing for Vanity Fair
Bollywood Royalty, Aishwarya Rai posing for Elle Magazine
Oscar-Nominated actress, Gabourey Sidibe also posing for Elle Magazine
Out of both magazine covers,
Emmy nominated actresses,
Mindy Kaling & Kerry Washington
are women of color who's
covers happen to be the
only black & white covers.
There are many products being marketed to reach that European Standard
The Japanese have created a nose thinner without dealing with the hassel of plastic surgery
Many bleaching creams claim to "fix pigmentation spots" but we all know that's not what people
use it for
The African-American hair care industry has been booming due to chemical relaxers and wigs many AA women use to straighten their natural hair.
Make up tips to make eyes "less Asian"
The Clark Doll Test
An African-American husband & wife duo, Dr. Kenneth & Mamie Clark conducted a expirement in 1939. They presented two identical dolls to children, the only difference is that one was white & the other black. Then, they asked a series of questions regarding which one was bad & good. This video is an update version of the expirment, but the results are the same since the 1st expirement in 1939. (Abagond 2009)
It's unfortunate many ethnic celebrities conform to the European beauty standards because they're contributing to the internalized racism that affects many young people who look up to them. Artists such as Beyonce and Rihanna (both Black) are critizied due to using skin lighteners.
Film & Television industry have always promoted "less ethnic you look, the better"
Margarita Cansino becomes Rita Hayworth
White Hispanic actors often lead in Latin America's TV shows as business executives, and millionaires while the darker ones are usually portrayed as criminals and the help.
Carol Channing of
'Hello, Dolly' fame
is actually African-American
Although many of these standards are still heavily dominated in the media, young celebrities are starting to break the Eurocentric mold. Most recently, '12 Years a Slave' star and Oscar-winning actress, Lupita Nyong'o has been an advocate for preserving and embracing black beauty which has inspired not just African-American girls, but also Latinas and Asians (both Southern and Eastern). (Ramisetti 2014)
Ramisetti, Kirthana. "Lupita Nyong’o Gives Moving Speech at Essence’s Black Women in Hollywood Event: ‘There Is No Shame in Black Beauty’ ." NY Daily News. N.p., 28 Feb. 2014. Web. 19 Apr. 2014.
Abagond, Julian. "The Clark Doll Experiment." Abagond. N.p., 29 May 2009. Web. 19 Apr. 2014.
Kite, Lexie, PhD. "Beauty Whitewashed: How White Ideals Exclude Women of Color." BEAUTY REDEFINED. N.p., 1 Feb. 2011. Web. 19 Apr. 2014.