Sunday, August 9, 2009

Stereotypes on top of stereotypes!?

One of the more tougher parts of being biracial, is dealing with stereotypes on top of more stereotypes. Light skinned black women and biracial women share something in common. We are often given negative black stereotypes by white people. people also give us stereotypes.

the two ultra common stereotypes given to mixed girls are "boyfriend stealer" and "snob". Many black people have this perception that the lighter you are, the more of a threat you are. There is a light vs. dark dilemma in the black race, that perpetuate these stereotypes. Mixed people are often labeled as snobby. This stems mostly from the fact that because one is biracial, and is thus half white, mentioning this makes you come off to black people, as if you are ashamed of being black. This "snob" stereotype also comes from the light vs. dark dilemma. It is believe that, lighter is preferred most, and that lighter skinned people are often snooty because of this (the reality is, most light skinned women become snooty because they are being mistreated for being light).

These are mean stereotypes, and what is so horrible about them, is the fact that they come from people within your own race.

There are two other stereotypes, that strictly refer to mixed people, but are more annoying than anything else.

One of those stereotypes is often mentioned by white people. Whites, often not sure of what to really say about mixed people, often say they are exotic. They don't use the words "beautiful" or "ugly", they just use the words "exotic". They use it so much, it makes one ask if they have ever seen a mixed person. The things I think when I hear someone say "exotic" are forbidden fruit, and low expectations.

What I mean is, "exotic" sounds like some kind of wild animal or forbidden or unknown piece of fruit.

But by saying "exotic" it also sounds like you had low expectations for how mixed people are so supposed to look. I know that what is exotic to people, is how one can look after two races converge with each other. I know what is exotic, is how there can be so many skin tones, facial features, and hair texture within the mixed race.

Exotic, is implying that biracial people are not normal.

But the other stereotype that probably annoys me the most, is the "self hater" stereotype. The "self hater" stereotype is where, any problem you have, any emotion you feel, is attributed by self hating. This is often used by people who are against interracial relationships, or just flat out hate mixed people. Why this annoys me so much, is that people forget that mixed people do go through your normal things like everyone else.

If a biracial person had depression, it does not necessarily mean its because of being mixed. I just can't stand it when everything we go through is blamed on self hating and being biracial.

There is one stereotype, that is lesser known, that is more positive that I came across a few weeks ago. A person made mention that alot of mixed people seemed to be creative.

After thinking about it, I did notice that alot of mixed people had a creative edge to them. Knowing that creativity can mean anything from drawing, to writing, to singing, to playing music, to even sports (well somewhat).

I remember, telling them, that I can see why, the kind of life many of us mixed people have to live, and often having no one to really talk to growing up, most turn to creative outlets to express our emotions.

One person made a good point about positive stereotypes. If we try to eradicate all negative stereotypes, do we do the same for positive?

And I would say yes. Because positive stereotypes can turn into negative stereotypes pending on the individual.


Biracial Christian Girl said...

hey you make some very good points! I'm biracial as well , black dad and white mom, and i have experienced pretty much all of what you write about. One hting i really want to comment on is the whole "Snob" thing. I got called snobby too and what happened after a while is that it back fired on the people saying it. I became really stand offish for a while with a lot of black people because I got so tired of the comments: "Snob" , " She thinks she's better" , " High yellow", " She thinks she's white", " You don't act black enough" ect. The list just goes on and on!

Biracial Christian Girl said...

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