Your skin just like pearls
The best thing in the world
Never trade you for anybody else
[Verse 2 - Beyonce]
Pose like a trophy when Naomis walk in
She need an Oscar for that pretty dark skin
Pretty like Lupita when the cameras close in
Drip broke the levee when my Kellys roll in
I think tonight she might braid her braids
Melanin too dark to throw her shade
She minds her business and wines her waist
Gold like 24k, okayWhere’s the Meaning?
Where’s the Meaning?
Colorism has been a problem that has plagued the black community for millennia. Not merely the color of a person’s skin, but also the shade of a person’s skin has resulted in the subjugation and oppression of people of various shades of color for centuries from education to job opportunities, housing to public insults and discrimination.
For ages the media has sought, both intentionally and unintentionally, to give privilege or credence to the notion that lighter skin is, socially, of more value, driving insecurity and a feeling or worthlessness for those with darker skin.
Well no more is this the case. Beyonce is bringing this social issue to light and normalizing dark-skin into the mainstream media.
When it was made public that the official soundtrack and album for the live action edition of the evergreen Lion King movie will be executive-produced by Beyonce, I believe everyone expected the ʻmelanatedʻ experience. Beyonceʻs somewhat silent activism for the inclusion of the culture into mainstream music, media and television has not gone unseen, so when the tracklist was released and there were several purely African acts on it, the black community was excited. There were several songs highlighting the different scenes and experiences the movie portrays, but one song that caught the worldʻs attention was this one. “Brown Skin Girl”. In a world where it seems like lightskin/white skin privilege is a thing to really be worried about, this song came right on time for the summer celebrations and relaxations.
“Brown Skin Girl” is a song that talks about the beauty in being of dark skin. No, not black. Dark Skin. Hence the reference to Lupita Nyongo and Kelly Rowland.
There is such a thing as light-skinned privilege and those who have dark or darker skin have had opportunities taken away from them and insults hurled at them because their skin color is seen as ʻtoo darkʻ and not beautiful enough for mainstream.
In a time when there is so much activism against skin bleaching and the brands that sell these products, nobody has made time to encourage dark skin girls to be unapologetically dark, so Bey with her baby Blue-Ivyʻs help, and amazing vocals from Wizkid and SAINt JHN, decided to.
Colorism is a problem deeply rooted in the black community, dating back to hundreds of years ago and is still strongly observed today, where everything white is good and everything black is bad, so as a brown skin girl myself it is a relief to see my shade finally being seen as good enough for anything, even though this is just one song, hopefully it will give rise to many other disruptive changes that give darker melanin a chance in mainstream.
Fun fact: After Beyonce had Blue, there was a lot of backlash and insults thrown at baby Blue for how ‘ughly’ she looked. Even thought Beyonce did not dignify the haters with a comment on all the dragging, you can tell that she did most of the work at home reminding Blue of how beautiful she is with her pearly brown skin, beautiful appy curls, and big bright smile.
-Who is responsible for making darker skinned people comfortable in their own skin? Parents, community or the individuals themselves?
Why is ʻBLACKʻ the colour that signifies evil? Why is black bad? Isn’t black a color just like white
When will skin bleaching actually become illegal? These skin bleaching agents that are so common like Hydroquinone has been found to be a leading cause of skin cancer, so at what point will it be illegal so sell over counters?
Does this mean the world likes dark skinned girls now? Will we see more Lupita-skin-color-types on the cover of magazines and on billboards and on our televisions and not as the ʻtoken black personʻ?
Dark Is Divine, a global anti-colorism campaign believes in fighting colorism and body image anxieties and also aims to transform Asia, Africa and other such regions (where the plight of colorism exists) into a region where dark skin color is embraced with good grace as light skin color, to the point that someone’s appearance or skin color ultimately has no importance.
A social media organization determined to widen the representation of dark-skinned people of all backgrounds. Their goal is to encourage dark-skinned people, particularly women and femmes, to embrace the richness and texture of their skin.