Thursday, April 8, 2010

Random Blog 2

*This pertains to today’s discussion on Kenneth Clark’s doll experiment.

Everyone stereotypes, we just need to find a way to change people’s perceptions. I did not realize how much I stereotyped until I took this class. I don’t do it on a regular basis, but when my identity is at stake that is when it usually comes up. I want people to think that I’m a strong, caring, independent person and when I feel someone is trying to prove me otherwise I tend to put my guard up. Here are some examples:

- I don’t like people to say that I’m a girl, I prefer to be called a tom boy. When I hear the word 'girl' some things that come to mind are prissy and weak.

- I don’t like when people say that I am white skinned; although my skin is white, I sometimes hate to admit it. When I was a toddler and thought of white people, some things that came to mind were: fancy, upper class, ignorant, and overly privileged. Because I have grown up since then, my views have changed and I'm not as offended. I’ve always thought of myself as black, after all: I’m mixed, my father is dark skinned, most of my friends were/are of color, and you were accepted more easily in my neighborhood if you were not white; I grew up in the projects where most of the people were of color.

 Yet, my sister who is a little darker than me, use to want to be considered white when she was a toddler. She thought of the white girls as 'pretty'. She use to always want to wear white stockings to make believe she had white skin. And she always said how she wanted to look like the blonde, curly haired white girl on the front of the package; my sister had pin-straight black hair.

- In the videos presented in class today, all the children thought of white girls as the prettier ones – but I always thought of Hispanic and African American girls as the prettier ones. After watching tons of hip hop music videos with guys always going after the Hispanic or African girl, I tended to think that these types of women were better looking. I am mixed, but by looking at my appearance you may think of me as only Hispanic. I love when people think I’m Hispanic because I think Hispanic people are pretty – just like some African American girls want to be considered white because they think their pretty.

It’s sad that we live in a world of discrimination and stereotyping. Just the other day my grandmother was talking about my aunt who is white skinned but mixed and mostly of African American descent. Back then, when my aunt was in school, my grandmother had to fill out an identification card; if in any case she had gone missing. She had two options to either put that her child was black or white. Because of her race, my grandmother put black – but she later felt bad about it, thinking that if her child went missing the police would be looking for a girl of color, when in actuality she appears white. Since then things have changed, and more options are put on all applications.

Overall, I think that stereotyping originates from your background, lifestyle, what you have seen, and what you have heard. It is going to be very difficult to overcome such a broad topic because everyone has to accept the thought of physical and mental change, especially the media.


Lesley said...

I am so glad you posted this, Laisha. Great reflections. So powerful!!!