Oprah And Iyanla Take On Colorism In The Black Community

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By Greg B.

We have all heard this right; light skin women are prettier than dark skin women? If you havent heard this, congratulations on not being subjected to the unfortunate world of colorism. This is not a new concept, however, it has been the subject of debate and contention for years.

But now the debate has managed to catch the attention of Oprah Winfrey and her LifeClass series. Ms. Winfrey plans to tackle this issue with Iyanla host of the show Iyanla Fix My Life.

This effort to open up new conversations about colorism, comes on the heels of the “Dark Girls” documentary directed by Bill Duke that takes an introspective look at color through the eyes of a woman and perspective based interviews from Hollywood actresses, as well as, everyday sisters. Oprah and Iyanla will discuss how colorism impacts self esteem, and the general misconceptions that it brings about.

For many years colorism, has impacted women from the 1800’s with the tragic mulatto; the mulatto was made tragic in the minds of whites who reasoned that the greatest tragedy was to be near-white: so close, yet a racial stride away. The near-white was to be pitied and shunned.

However in relation to dark skinned women, there has been a pitting of sorts against one another. Light skinned women are viewed in general society as more attractive, smarter and better than their dark skin counterparts. This is a myth that is being dispelled by conversations such as the one Oprah’s LifeClass will address and hopefully in our communities as well. Sadly, the stereotype is perpetuated in Hollywood because of a perception of who moviegoers want to see on the screen.

Source Huff Post

I am curious to know how many of the female readers have experienced colorism, or perhaps have benefited from it, chime in. 


Greg B., is a financial professional and native Ohioan who is the writer here. I am an avid reader, coffee connoisseur and dog lover. Follow me on Twitter @love2edify.

daphne R

7 Comment

  1. I’m a proud light-skin African American Black-women. I don’t see color-lines within my people because that’s not the way I was raised. My mother is very very very fair skin proud black-women and my father and 1 brother is brown-skin, my sister is lighter then I am and 2 other brothers moca. We all have the same father and the same mother. Sometimes we squabble like cats & dogs but the fights have never been about who’s lighter or who’s darker.
    I moved to the deep-south of Arkansas with my son and daughter, Daughter /high-yellow and son is moca. My black people treated us like dogs… My daughters went to Wally-World greeted 2 dark-skin African American ladies with a “HELLO”, they greeted her back by calling her a “fvckn bytch”…
    My son went to Philander Smith College, he only lasted there for one semester because someone went into his dorm room and pee’d all over his desk. They had a problem with his skin-color and the fact that he didn’t follow the leader and he didn’t walk around with his pants hanging off his a$$, and the fact that he had so many female friends because he was raised to respect all blackwomen no matter what complexion their skin is..
    he carried himself with high-self-esteem and intelligence. He has 2 sisters (1 high-yellow and 1 brown-skin), his older brother is just a white looking as a white-man, but my children all have the same father and mother (myself)…
    So this issue is not one-sided, its the men too, and I’m so sick and tired of the arrogance of it all to the point I want out of America period, and I don’t want my children in relationships and marriage with my own people.
    Let me break this down because people get it all twisted up. Its African (AMericanized-mentality) that I am against, and that’s not saying that I want my children married to white-people, and I’m not saying that all african americans have this negative behavior
    but “Black America” is totally “(out of control)”.

  2. Red one, African-Americans are not the only race that practices colorism. Research it and see if I’m not right. It’s not just a black thing. People are people no matter what race they are.

    • Concern…

      Thank you for the information. I will research. Its really strange how God was ministering to my spirit a couple days ago, he showed me a vision of all races, each race had “2 SHADES” of people light-skin & dark-skin, and I did discern color-lines drawn, so now I do realize its all over the world. But it seems we (African Americans) are the most hated and worst (we hate even more so within our own race)… I’ve never in my life felt so much embarassement concerning my people within the past 5 yrs, even more so in the past 12 months.

  3. In Genesis GOD created man not men, so all men came from that man. What was the first country mentioned in Genesis? and that country is in Africa! By the way, view The BlackMan(State of Emergency) on Youtube. Peace!

    • @Insomemaze

      Thanks for that information, but we also sound kinda irritated to..

    • Thank you… Insomemaze

  4. Just what I was looking for, thanks for posting.

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