Viola Davis, SAG’s Best Actress in a Drama for ‘How to Get Away With Murder’:-
“I’d like to thank Paul Lee, Shonda Rhimes, Betsy Beers, Bill D’Elia, and Peter Nowalk for thinking that a sexualized, messy, mysterious woman could be a 49-year-old dark-skinned African-American woman who looks like me.”
This is the problem that I see here, “Dark Girls” documentary and all: Western society’s “dark” is the SKIN TONE of the AVERAGE black person on the PLANET EARTH. I don’t consider myself dark. And you sure as hell won’t find me starting to, either. I’m average.
On the few occasions when I’ve heard people say to my face that I’m “dark-skinned”, I literally have to stop and take stock, because it’s like they said something in a foreign language I haven’t learned. It doesn’t compute, or impact. Other than to irritate. As in tolerating an improbable asshat comment.
I’ll tell you why.
In my family, I’m the average skin tone. In the Caribbean, I’m the average skin tone. In Trinidad where I grew up, with its virtual 1/2 Black 1/2 East Indian population, I’m STILL the average skin tone.
So now that I’ve gotten my knee jerk reaction off my chest, I’ll rest.
(EDIT: adding that I did not grow up being, and still am not, accustomed to being referred to by the colour of my skin.)
Hope the fact that I’m actually average doesn’t come as a shock to y’all.
If so, tough.