Note from BW of Brazil: The ideas and opinions expressed in today’s post are slowly beginning to catch on among Afro-Brazilians. If the analysis of the topic continues to catch on, it could represent a true paradigm shift in terms of black Brazilian identity, how they see relationships and possibility of the rise on a new black nationalism. There are certainly some readers out there who surely wonder why it is necessary to continue to follow the debate over the issue of interracial relationships, but such people should take note that the same issues that affect the black community in Brazil surely affect black communities in other countries around the world because we are all so deeply immersed in the ideology of white supremacy.
In Brazil, the overwhelming majority of black Brazilians subscribe to the belief that “we are all equal” and that “love has no color“, which in many ways, on a much deeper level, is simply a re-affirmation of a firm belief in liberal, Marxists ideals based on the impossibility of equality for all. As such, I don’t feel the need to waste time and energy sharing the widespread belief in such rhetoric even as sometimes in ends up seeping into the material. What I written for some time is that, as it appeared that only black women were addressing this issue, when the time came that black men wanted to chime in, the space would also be open for them. As it turns out, both sides are coming to some very intriguing conclusions. There are black women who are going deeper than the “our loneliness is all the fault of black men” that many coming from a feminist perspective would have us believe and taking a direct aim at the true culprit: racism, Eurocentric thought and white supremacy.
On this topic, the past several years have brought some very thought-provoking analyses as the awakening process slowly spreads to more and more black Brazilians. Stephanie Ribeiro wondered if there was a certain fear of black couples in Brazil, which in some ways seemed to play out in the initial reaction to a recent commercial by a Brazilian cosmetics company featuring an all-black family, a rarity on Brazilian TV and in advertising. Léo Custódio wrote an entire piece on how Brazilian culture taught him to prefer white girls/women. Caio Cesar dos Santos and Cléo Goulart both expressed the idea that all black Brazilians are palmiteiros, meaning they have a preference for white people in relationships and the time has come to recognize it. Ana Cláudia Silva understood how living in a Eurocentric culture made her hate the very color of her own sexual organ while writer Mia recognized that the culture led her to liking white boys which led to her hyper-sexualized image and exploitation by white males. Felipe Matos, perhaps peeping the game, resolved to stop having relationships with whites, while Nina Raiza took it a step further seeing such unions as another weapon of white dominance over blacks. In the midstof it all, UN Women representative in Brazil and producer Kenia Dias summed up everything when she opined that, in this day and age, marriage between blacks is a political act. Indeed. A thought-provoking text, the author of today’s article even makes reference to that post.
There are several other texts about this topic posted on this blog, so before anyone rolls their eyes about seeing this topic again, take a deeper look at what these writers are saying and why it is such an important topic. If you live outside of Brazil in a multi-racial society, believe me, some of these texts will be very relevant to understanding your own nation, be it its past, present day or future.
Afrocentric love is, in addition to taking care of ourselves, detoxification
For some time now I’ve wanted to talk about what it’s like to have a relationship with a black woman and try to understand why many of us black men pass them by.
by Mauro Anderson Baracho
I don’t know if I can speak as well as they do on this subject, but I want to bring the vision of a black man, since most of the texts on this subject are written by black women.
Due to some posts and some things I write, some black men come looking for me, “Man, I saw what you posted and you’re right. I want to relate to black women now.” I try to explain that it’s not quite like that, and I will say the reason: days ago I posted a story entitled “Marriage among Blacks is a Political Act” and when I read this interview, a few months ago, the words of the actress Kenia Maria drew much attention.
The piece in question is what she says that having a relationship with a conscious black man is different. According to her it is different to relate to a black man who understands the body of this black woman and the texture of her hair and is not afraid to put his hand in that hair.
It made so much sense to me that I found myself thinking about the various times when I didn’t understand this leading me to not relate to a black woman.
The issue of hair is a key point. Many men have no idea what these women went through by straightening their hair to fit into a standard and what many go through in a transition. I’ve heard reports of girls who went days without leaving the house after starting the transition.
It’s unacceptable to many men, who disregard this whole process, that black women wear hair pieces or laces. Examples of men talking about this aren’t lacking. In the song “Diamante da Lama” by Nego do Borel. In the song he proudly states that the women he “gets with” now only have hair that flies. What about Chris Brown? In the song “Ayo” he sings a chorus that says: “All my bitches got real hair” as if they were not black people, didn’t have cabelo crespo (kinky/curly hair), as if their sisters and mothers had not gone through this process.
An interesting scene from the series Dear White People is the scene in which a couple (I can’t remember the name of the characters now) is having sex and the guy pulling her hair and pulls her out lace and she, in turn, is totally embarrassed. Have you ever thought that many women don’t tell this to their partners out of shame?
Where I’m going with this is that many black men are not ready to relate to black women, even those who want to. The explanation is simple: a lot of black men, socialized to pursue these standards, want to wake up next to a beautiful, blonde Barbie with hair that can be done just like that.
Once in college, a black female classmate who now wears natural hair told me that her ex-boyfriend, also black, insisted that she always wear straight hair and for that reason only now would she have gotten the courage to wear it natural. There is no key in which you would turn out to like and love everything in a black person, this is a detoxification process of all this Eurocentric standard that many of us have come to love in women.
I have, and still do, go through this process. Although I was never someone who only had relationships with white women, I needed to rethink a lot so as not to hurt the black woman who would come to be by my side. I advise black men to feel this like this, not to be ashamed or afraid to assume this, and to have the courage to rethink, so that in the future they will be better men for their black women.
And to those who can’t give up that thought, that continue to pursue the standards, after all, as my wise mother would say: “It helps a lot those who don’t get in the way.”