top of page

A Metaphor

This is a metaphor I came up with to describe the dynamics of colorism within the equality-conscious black community. (by conscious I mean aware of the theories dating far previous to colonization by europeans, and thus the knowledge that all skin tones are of equal value if not melanin of higher, and in comparison, non-equality-conscious black folk would be described as those who still agree that light skin is more valuable, inarguably, than dark skin, in any capacity. Those who have been conditioned to think so by our eurosupremacist captors.)

In this metaphor, Think of the melanated community as a pair of young siblings (youth here symbolizes innocence, not weakness).

The siblings have been adopted into a prestigious family of Two parents (the oppressors in power in america). Sibling A has darker skin and always gets lesser treatment than Sibling B who has lighter skin. A and B were adopted together, they are always with eachother, and have a very strong bond. The parents, however, don't care. The parents have been brainwashed for centuries to think pale skin = more safe. Because of this, they associate A more with what they are uncomfortable with, and in comparison, B with what they understand and feel safe around. No matter how untrue this is, the siblings feel they have no choice but to live under this oppressive rule, because its so engrained in their adoptive parents culture, and because their adoptive parents have provided them with so much leverage, all the while insisting the siblings wont and can't find these glorious provisions elsewhere ("freedom," healthcare, connectivity, material gain).

After time and time again giving B a better bed, speaking to her more nicely, including B in more opportunities, not preventing or attending as much to the health and wellbeing of A, etc., the dynamic is this; since the siblings are always together, every time A gets denied something for B, B sees how sad and defeated her sibling is. The more this happens, the worse the relationship between the siblings get. The worse and worse B feels for everything good that is told to her or given to her, the more A resents B, and they both resent themselves. They deeply, deeply resent the parents.

Everything that is given to B now becomes attached to A feeling bad, she no longer hears these things alone, even if they are said to her by people who arent comparing her to her sibling. Now both siblings are angry.

The same truth is that B is the one who has to speak up and say to the parents they don't want these things to happen, because she's the one receiving the gifts, even if she doesn't want them. she's the one being listened to more, even if she doesn't want to be.


Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page