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  1. 1. Colorism By: La Teisha Thompson
  2. 2. What is Colorism • Colorism is a practice of discrimination by which those with lighter skin are treated more favorably than those with darker skin.
  3. 3. Origins of Colorism • Through miscegenation( the sexual exploitation of black female slaves and white male slave masters) mixed races between African and European ancestry was created. • European colonialism created a system of white superiority and racial dominance which put white people at the top of the hierarchy and black people at the bottom. • Light skinned slaves were given less harsher tasks like working inside of the master’s house while dark skinned slaves participated in hard labor such as working in the fields. • After the abolition of slavery in 1865, colonialism caused division
  4. 4. The effects of Colorism in the Black Community • Around the 20th century, separatist standards began to form in black elitist groups such as social clubs and societies. • Brown Paper Bag Test- was a ritual practiced in fraternities, sororities, clubs, churches, schools, and various social clubs. • If a person was darker than the brown paper bag they were not allowed to participate • The Comb Test- was used to test the coarseness of someone’s hair. • Spike Lee’s movie “School Daze” is a perfect example of colorism in the black community as well as in black colleges and universities. • Light skin was seen as more appealing and was
  5. 5. Colorism is Global Colorism believe or not is not just a African American issue. It is an issue that is happening globally all over the world especially in countries who’s cultures are very diverse and psychically are distinctive in appearance. Cultures such as the Asian, Latin, African, and Caribbean are all affected by colorism.
  6. 6. Colorism in the Asian Culture• Korea, Japan, and China - Fair skinned is more desirable than darker skin. Women are getting plastic surgery to achieve the “Westernized Look” such as double eyelids, defining jaw lines, and narrower noses. • India- White is seen as better, white is rich, and fair complexion equals success in one’s life. Dark skinned brides are not taken to local festivals or weddings due to discrimination of their skin color. Fair skinned brides are seen as more attractive and are married quicker. Bleaching creams are used to make the skin more fair.
  7. 7. Colorism in Latin America -In Latin America, the term Mestizo was historically a person of European Ancestry known as a today some with mixed ancestry. -Being either Light skinned or dark skinned has an impact on how you are viewed in the culture. -In the Dominican Republic, men and women are pressured to marry a fairer skinned mate so that their off spring can be light.
  8. 8. Colorism in Africa and Caribbean • In both South Africa and Jamaica, there is an obsession to lightened one's skin. Lighter skin is seen as more attractive. • In Jamaica- a person’s beauty is defined by how light or dark your skin is and how close your features are to European features. A person is described first by their complexion first. • In South Africa and Nigeria - several stores sell bleaching creams over the counter. Many women are getting these creams to achieve a more lighter complexion.
  9. 9. Psychological Affects of Colorism • Colorism has left a lasting affect on millions of people. Both male and female of all nationalities. • One is made to feel unattractive because of the complexion of his/her skin • Constantly comparing one’s self, doing different things to change one’s appearance. • Colorism has caused many to think that if you are lighter or near white then you will have more success in life. • Depression, self-hate, low-self esteem, internal oppression are all results of colorism.
  10. 10. Videos to Check Out • Skin Bleaching Epidemic In Jamaica Short Documentary ( YouTube) • Skin Bleaching in Africa( YouTube) • Negro: Colorism and “Mejorando La Raza”( YouTube) • Light skinned vs. Dark skinned shows on the Tyra Banks (YouTube)