The Ambitious-Slut Label and the Woman of African Descent

In Ain’t I A Woman, bell hooks interrogates the black woman’s experience with gender in America. A sentence that resonates years after first encountering the text, is, and I paraphrase, that regardless of what walk of life a black woman hones, she’s assumed to be “selling.” This phrase conveys a poignant truth that continues to…

She’s Gotta Have it, but She Can’t Have it All

On the surface, Spike Lee appears to deliver a revolutionary protagonist in his Netflix series She’s Gotta Have It. Nola Darling (DeWanda Wise) is not only outspoken, intelligent, and artistically provocative, she’s brown-skinned. She isn’t even an Ashley Banks or Dionne Davenport type that intrigues the European gaze with a blackness that simultaneously appeases a…

Maternalizing The Sexualized Black Body

Black female sexuality remains at the core of caricatured black female identity. Scandal’s Olivia Pope, the DC fixer by day and white male concubine at night, is easily the prototype for the black female roles that followed. Her hyper-sexuality quenched the western drought of the black female whore veiled in attributes like education, conventional success,…