Check out the new SPARKpiece on the Shade(ism) of it all!
"It took me a minute to process what she had just said. It was pretty straight-forward, but I struggled to really wrap my mind around it. She paused, and then repeated herself: “I want to study outside, but I can’t afford to get any darker. This is as dark as I am willing to get.” One of my classmates, someone who seemed so confident in herself, seemed genuinely afraid of a darker shift in her complexion. I wasn’t even part of that conversation–I just heard it in passing–but her reaction stuck with me for the rest of the day, despite its brevity. Then as the days passed, I began to notice the same attitude in other exchanges between classmates, especially my fellow black women.”