Sorry, But That's Not the Representation We Asked For

Why people who face isms need decision-making power

Hello friends,

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about representation. It’s something Black people and many people who face isms want, but even when things happen that are supposed to offer representation, we’re still not happy.

The reason is because of another lack of representation - behind the scenes where decisions are made.

So when someone decides that a TV cast will feature representation of every ethnicity, there’s no guarantee that the roles people of color fill will be rich and multifaceted. It’s much more likely they will be stereotypical, conforming to overused tropes about this or that type of person. That’s because many of the people who are approving, creating, and casting shows are white, and know nothing about the people they’re trying to show on TV.

It’s similar in the movies, where often characters of color are boxed into tropes that do nothing to reveal our all too human complexity.

The Wrong Kind of Representation? Unpacking the Vogue Cover

Here’s another example: you have Black women on the cover of Vogue. On the face of it, that’s great, but does that really represent those Black women as they are, and Black women in general?

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