We have to learn and grow simultaneously, or else we will not succeed.
- a black nursemaid or nanny in charge of white children.
I found this on Google, and honestly found it to be too forgiving. Mammy’s were not called “nursemaids,” they were called slaves or “the help,” their humanity stripped from them, their milk stolen from their breasts to nurse babies that weren’t theirs against their will. Mammy’s were often raped by their masters. Mammy’s were forced to tend to white babies and work tirelessly to tend to white children, their own children growing up without a mother in silent agony.
How does this relate to modern black women? Are you sure this actually fits in the context of today? It absolutely does.
You see, something I’ve noticed and experienced for myself pretty consistently through my life is that black women are expected to go above and beyond for the nonblack people around them. This selfless falling on the sword, so to speak, is the result of years of being told we are not good enough as we are, and so we must thanklessly do more.
We have to look to white women for beauty standards, and be grateful that now, since white women are getting work done to acquire what black women have been verbally abused for having for centuries, it’s finally “normalized,” however black women still remain “unattractive.” We are expected to thank Latinx women for being “spicy,” to take the heat off us being seen as angry. We’re expected to praise the Kardashians for getting “boxer braids” (just so you know, they’re cornrows), because now, even though black women can get fired for cornrows not being professional, Kim Kardashian has made our protective style “acceptable,” therefore cute.
The stripping away of the many layers of black women, and making it a commodity of which black women contribute to entirely, but in no way can benefit from without pushback from society, is the effective mammyfication of black women. We give from our breasts beauty standards, fashion, and pop culture, but when we partake, it’s no longer “in.” We coddle white women when our “harsh tones” offend them. We live in silent agony, allowing the slave master to usher us out of the house, when Kim K touts her hoop earrings and “Bo Derek” braids.
Put some respeck on black women. We raised you.
If you enjoyed this, please consider pressing ‘Follow’ so you can be on my mailing list and receive updates when I post!