Rethink the American Aesthetic

With time, the racism spread to more and more cultural arenas. American aesthetic culture was built around white standards of beauty. The physical attributes of the white race – for example light skin, fair and straight hair, a small upturned nose – came to be identified as beautiful. Typical black features – dark skin, dark and bushy hair, a flattened nose – were deemed ugly. These preconceptions ingrained the imagined hierarchy at an even deeper level of human consciousness
- Excerpt from the book "Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind."

My partner read this to me the other night while reading this book and it made the fire in my belly that much stronger. We know this. This is nothing new. The term beautiful has been reserved for young, thin white women with ridiculous standards for even them to meet. And rather than address this directly, people just ignored physical beauty and just started telling everyone beauty comes from within. The fight seemed impossible to endure.

Well, it's time for us to all call BULLSHIT! Beauty is BOTH what is outside and inside and cannot be measured against any standard. We are all inherently beautiful and worthy of love and warmth and connection - regardless of race, gender, sexual orientation, religion, ability status, SES...and the list goes on! Especially race! White, brown, black...beauty is not a term limited to ANY skin color and I will keep fighting until the day we can all stand UNITED and BOUND by this truth and feel both safe and empowered to claim this for ourselves and everyone else! I see you and you are beautiful!

 

Note: I have not read the book, "Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind" in its entirety but my partner said it was an extremely eye-opening book and one he enjoyed immensely. If you have read or decide to read it, would love to hear more reactions to excerpts, thoughts, etc.