The mantra “My black is beautiful” is one that is repeated over and over again by African American women everywhere and one that we strive to teach our little girls. When our children see images of African American actresses on TV, we hope that the images will inspire them to want to grow up and achieve success. The question becomes, does the entertainment industry actually portray black women in the light that we ‘d hope would be a good influence on our kids?
Many African American actresses would say that the answer is a big “NO!” Many people feel that characters such as Tyler Perry’s “Madea” or Martin Lawrence’s “Big Momma” still portray black women in the stereotypical roles that were portrayed in movies of the past such as “Gone with the Wind.” However, others feel that those characters are actually paying homage to the older black women in the community that helped raise many us and were loved by all of us. Do these characters actually give our little girls the wrong impression about other black women?
With African American women working so hard to break down racial barriers and typecasting in the industry, does a “Madea” type character give our children the wrong perception of black women in the community?