Interviewed by Meets Obsession Re Fair & Lovely Beauty, Colorblind Racism

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...full article available at Meets Obsession: Paper for the Fashion & Culture Obsessed


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"...[W]e might think this is a new trend, or happening solely in India, but really this is a fashion staple,” says Dr. Marcia Alesan Dawkins, a visiting scholar at Brown University and author of Clearly Invisible: Racial Passing and the Color of Cultural Identity to Meets Obsession. 'This has been going on for a long time. It cuts across nations, eras, historical groups and gender.'"

“They can also download a phone app that will show them how much the cream will lighten their skin over time,” explains Dawkins. “This cuts across gender lines, it’s racism; even if it’s not the way we in the U.S. generally think about it. It’s the way we think about race on a larger scale that greatly impacts the beauty and fashion industry.”

“There’s an increasingly new idea of what beauty is. Girls are being told that tan and beige are the skin colors that reflect everybody, but they don’t. And with marketing, telling even white girls that tan is what’s beautiful, it affects them too. It’s changing the way we look at white women, too,” Dawkins said. Specifically, she pointed out superstars Angelina Jolie, Beyonce, and J.Lo, all of who tend to have a similar skin color these days. But she also noted that this does not affect white privilege.

“I urge you to really think about this idea of passing as a fashion trend. One that yields real results for the people and is something that eventually becomes an issue of class & politics.”