On little black girls and Barbie dolls

/ 4 February 2009

Danielle Belton has a wonderful essay up that considers just a few of the challenges of raising young women of color in this culture, in this moment in time. I love the story she tells of how her dad empowered her, gently and by example, and I love her current project, begun in the midst of a media culture that complains of how “anomalous” Obama’s daughters are.

I think people who carry white privilege (myself among them) need to think about how we can work constructively to dismantle those privileges in favor of shared power and embrace of diversity. I'm thinking of all the coloring books and dolls who showcase white folk ignorant of systemic privilege, and the absence of dolls and games that explore alternate ways of living. What drawing should I be doing alongside my sons? What's my own project, which might showcase white folk actively dismantling racism?