Live media literate.

Join Understand Media to get access to our forums, the latest media literacy news, member-only articles, early access to our journals, and much more.

We will never give your info to anyone!

Welcome, Guest
Username: Password: Remember me

TOPIC: Colorism and skin bleaching

Colorism and skin bleaching 06 Mar 2016 20:54 #9071

  • janet.o
  • janet.o's Avatar
  • Offline
  • Junior Member
  • Posts: 28
  • Thank you received: 1
  • Karma: 0
I read an important interview on The Fader, where the Ghanaian actress Ama K Abrebese discusses the extreme obsession of skin color that is a result of the media and society we live in today, and her contribution to making a change in Ghana. Western society has had such an impact on the whole world in defining beauty and what is ideal, and unfortunately the white norm still exists, and it has disastrous effects on many society’s that do not inherently fit in that box.
She explains how she’s been brought up in London, a “multicultural” city, and how she was shocked when she moved to Ghana and experienced “colorism” to an extremely saddening extent. The billboards all promote the white norm by selling skin bleach products with slogans like “get the perfect white skin” etc, and the skin bleaching is such a widespread issue that they even have a local name for the type of skin disorder that many women get from doing this do their skin.
The problem is not the vanity part, because many people care a great deal about their appearance regardless of culture, but it’s the fact that so many cultures consider WHITE being the best skin color. It’s also evident in the Persian culture, as I remember how my relatives could comment on me being in the sun to get a tan as something negative, saying that it will make my skin dark, as if it were a bad thing.
Abrebese also talks about a study from 2005, where they concluded that about 30% of all Ghanaian men, and 45% of all Ghanaian women had at one point bleached their skin. I was shocked by these statistics, and glad that someone is talking about this problem, and acting to try and change this mentality. She created a campaign that put up contrasting billboards, with celebrities, that say “I love my natural skin tone, say NO to skin bleaching and skin toning.”
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Colorism and skin bleaching 12 Mar 2016 20:22 #9122

  • rashadjohnson
  • rashadjohnson's Avatar
  • Offline
  • Junior Member
  • Posts: 22
  • Karma: 0
I think its really sad to see a society's influence on another nation, especially one with its own systematic problems, languages, cultures, etc. As a Black man its saddening to see and hear that people of color have been brainwashed to believe that the color of their skin is an absolute abomination to the world in which they live. I was always taught that Black is beautiful and melanin saves. Hell, it serves as a protector from the sun. There are so many positives to having dark skin, yet so many of us view it as a negative.
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Colorism and skin bleaching 13 Mar 2016 16:39 #9136

  • kamran.m
  • kamran.m's Avatar
  • Offline
  • Junior Member
  • Posts: 28
  • Karma: 0
I'm glad that you posted this Janet. Over and over again people feed in to what society thinks is the definition of beautiful. This is hurting many people who listen, because the truth is, most people don't fit into that category that they created. This is lowering people's self-esteem in many areas of the world. I believe that it is something that is learned for these people to not like their skin tone. In reality, there is nothing wrong with any skin tone. And it is funny because I am also Persian and have heard family tell me every time I'm getting darker as if that's something I should try to avoid. These days, it's a special skill required to be yourself and not listen to what society wants from you. Embracing all your features will set you free :)
The administrator has disabled public write access.
Time to create page: 0.244 seconds