The Importance of Representation for Black Women and Men
Being a young black girl in today’s society is difficult. Negative stereotypes and systematic bias has created challenges for black women that they will struggle with for their whole lives. To counteract this negativity, society must fight back by integrating positive representation into mainstream channels. Young black women need to see themselves on TV, in movies, and read books that feature people of color as the main characters. This representation not only helps in the upbringing of young black women but also helps destroy racial and gender bias worldwide.
In recent news, a black woman-owned company, Honey Pot, was accused of being “racist” to white people for stating, that she wants her company to do well "so the next black girl that comes up with a great idea could have a better opportunity". The backlash targeted toward the company was due to a commercial released by Target. The commercial for feminine hygiene products used black actors for the portrayal. Immediately, there was a response from the internet as people left poor reviews for the company on multiple sites. This is an example of why we need more representation of the black community.
Representation helps create self-worth for young women and makes them feel just as worthy and as important as any other race. Representation also has another side to it, where it encourages society to also accept other races and forms of beauty as commonplace and mainstream. It helps build a bridge between races by helping educate people on cultural differences. Sometimes people are afraid to ask questions that they think might be disrespectful or rude toward a group of people. However, watching these conversations play out over television or through stories can bring people together.
In the case of Honey Pot, the backlash tells us that we need even more representation. There was no reason for people to find the commercial “racist” for wishing that black women have more opportunities to share their ideas. The Honey Pot commercial is a sign of changing times.
At D’IYANU, we work hard to create trendy African print fashion and also create an inclusive community that accurately represents strong men and women of color. Our bold prints and vibrant colors are perfect for those who like to let their clothes do the talking. Part of our goal as a company is to build up the youth through positive representation.
For young, impressionable girls it is imperative to raise their confidence and self-esteem, so they grow up to be strong women. The bottom line is that representation makes young women feel like they matter and gives them a voice.
Our goal is to continue to provide an inclusive community and representation for all women and men of color by continually raising the bar. Be part of our community and support our goals of representation for people of color. Check out our vibrant and bold African Print Clothing and proudly represent this movement with us!
Don't forget to check out our recent blog "The Strength of Women's Suits" and shop our new Spring T-Shirt Collection!