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Caucasian Model Portrayed as ‘African Queen’ Sparks Outrage

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A Scandonovian model was hired to portray an African-queen.

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Young Black models are often being overlooked in today’s fashion world. Sure, we have phenomenal African American models that have ascended to stardom, but the Naomi’s and Tyra’s are few and far between when compared to their White counterparts.

A recent photo shoot for an editorial in “Numero” magazine entitled “African Queen” featured a 16-year-old Caucasian girl, Ondria Hardin, in heavy bronzing makeup portraying the African Queen. People are outraged and it’s easy to understand why. With all of the Black models of the world that are trying to make it in modeling, why would  the magazine choose to paint a Caucasian girl as opposed to hiring a model of African-descent? The company that the model worked for had a pool of black models, but in far fewer numbers than whites.

It’s a sad day in the world when they won’t even allow black models to be the focus of black-oriented features and magazine spreads. One commenter on the website Jezebel.com had this to say about it, “Can I just say as a young black model (I’m a girl) having worked my ass for the past 3 years, this hurts my soul. I’m happy for Ondria as a person but the amount of times I have been told “oh sorry we already have a black girl that looks like you” or “most of our clients dont hire black girls, sorry” and then I see THIS, it pisses me off ! There are so many beauitful black models out there working TWICE as half(sic) for barely half the recognition and the only time they give a shit about us is when they need our dark skin for some “ethnic” photo shoot and in this case with Ondria, they couldn’t even be bothered. Can I see a black girl do SCANDANAVIAN PRINCESS please? Hmmm?”. These are my sentiments as well.

How do you feel about the magazine’s decision?

Malcolm Morrow, a Your Black World Network contributor, is a senior, criminal justice major at The University of Southern Miss.