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Black Model Told “One Black Girl Is Enough”

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Black Model Told One Black Girl Is EnoughBy Carolyn Hall

There have always been buzz and rumors about racism in the fashion world and the lack of color on the runway. In fact, almost sixty years ago, the wife of Johnson Publishing mogul created an all-black fashion troupe to address the void of Black models. Yet, decades later, a “lack of black faces” on the runway is still a very real and prevalent problem.

Many Black models, despite the racism that they face, remain quiet because they fear the backlash that they may encounter. If a model were bold enough to speak openly and specifically about the fashion houses that refuse to hire them, they could very well be blackballed and never work again. Thus, many remain quiet and complicit.

Afro-Parisian model, Anais Mali, recently sat down with intothegloss.com to discuss some of the racism that she has experienced in the modeling world. This is quite a bold move for the up and comer. In particular, she talks about her experiences working in Europe.

In the interview, she states that at several different fashion houses in the United States, “we already have Jourdan [Dunn], one black girl is enough.” The message: that one black girl was the only Black face that they were willing to use, which means that the countless other Black girls with desires of being models were fresh out of luck. Likewise, Mali went on to discuss her difficulties working in Paris, the birthplace of fashion: “France is very racist, you don’t see a lot of powerful black people in France—it’s starting but it’s slow-moving” (Anais Mali). This seems hard to fathom considering the number of Black ex-patriots who in the early to mid-twentieth century fled America for the so-called liberal and tolerant country.

Nevertheless, the problem of racism in the fashion industry seems to be multi-layered. According to many notable fashion veterans, agents don’t search for Black models because they don’t sell well. Likewise, designers rarely pick Black models because they don’t fit the “unspoken, but consistently shown aesthetics” (European beauty standards). Magazine editors stay away from putting Black models on covers or major ads, because they say Black women are a hard sale. LIES. LIES.LIES. It seems that the fashion world not only refuses to recognize Black beauty, but it also continues to negate the tremendous buying power of the Black dollar.

Despite their continual ignorance and dismissal of the Black consumer, they generate millions from the free and non-stop advertisement that many of them receive via Black hip hop artists and the millions of dollars that Black consumers, women in particular, pour into their labels. A good way to “force “many of these covert racist to become more diverse is to withhold the Black dollar and allow them to see how they are “biting the hand that had been loyally feeding them.”

Source: IntoTheGloss

271 Comments

  1. Kennedy220

    February 6, 2014 at 6:04 pm

    I just held a course on this today. Believe it or not colored strippers hear this too much as well. Colored strippers will bring in the wrong crowd, 3 black girls are too many, only so many colored girls can be on the floor during these hours. Black girls can only dance after 3am. The list goes on. What can we do guys

    • Keepingitreal

      February 7, 2014 at 10:46 am

      We can start by not referring to African Americans as “colored”.

      • jimmy smith

        February 9, 2014 at 12:55 am

        I am a black american who has roots that must have originated on the African continent. I cannot claim to be “African American” because I know no one on that continent, have no known family ties there, was not born there. Idiots like you, “keepitreal” may be surprised that the “African American” designation was actually started by some white person, or, better still, some “European American” person! I am satisfied to be referred to as a black american.

    • Devon

      February 9, 2014 at 3:01 am

      Colored???? WTF?????

  2. madpoet429

    February 6, 2014 at 6:21 pm

    Stop buying & patronizing these racist devils products & establishments! The only thing this devil understands is Dollars! Stop.buying their shit then they’ll release some half ass apology and the wannabes will run right back to spending with them. Willie Lynch psychos & brainwashing to be white!

  3. godfather05

    February 6, 2014 at 6:42 pm

    Until people are willing to name the organizations or stores that use this practice there is nothing that can be done. If someone is being discriminated against then they should have the guts to say what stores that agency is working for. Until then, how do we know who to boycott? The only way to eliminate these stereotypes is to confront the racists front and center. Remember, people would not go to see black actors, or blacks could not play quarterback or center in the NFL. At one time the NBA was all white however the racist were confronted with their lies and proven wrong. In 5 years 80% of all the quarterbacks in the NFL will be black if the owner wants to win. Be willing to stand up and call names or keep quiet.

  4. Eric

    February 6, 2014 at 6:48 pm

    This is why we need to have our own. We spend billions of our dollars, each year, making other communities rich, so why can’t we do it for our own community? Why is it that 99% of the products marketed to our community are not black owned? Why is it the Asians have the market on hair weave? Why is it we never question these things?

    • 3d2002

      February 6, 2014 at 7:51 pm

      Thank you, Eric. I agree 100%. We need to not worry about the others and go for ours!!How plain and simple is that? I have this same convo about this same thing on the blackhairinformationdotcom website. Why is this such a mystery and we subject ourselves to this foolish. We are being pimped by every Tom, Dick and Harry and we seem to be just peachy with it. What the hell is wrong with us? People let’s start a movement!!

  5. t

    February 6, 2014 at 7:04 pm

    She is in the industry,perhaps it’s time to stop letting others say “No” and make a step towards making demands,positive demands in her career. I’m in this process as well but with different aspirations maybe she should open her own fashion house!! Hopefully, God will grace this sister & myself with the knowledge & entrepreneurship to do what needs to be done.

  6. marcus davis

    February 6, 2014 at 7:58 pm

    Boggles the mind to how much money black people spend in other communities who don’t give a rats ass about us to begin with yet black folks still go running to spend their money with them regardless.Especially when it comes to fashion ,I could’nt give a rats ass about fashion personally but its blatantly obvious that we as a people should be having our own medias of entertainment to begin with ,this is long overdue then there would’nt be these senarios dealing with friggin white racist bullshit to begin with.Those assholes will be coming to us for business.

  7. elrancho2

    February 6, 2014 at 8:22 pm

    As ever, we need more black-owned businesses. Businesses that will treat their black customers with the respect they deserve. Racist companies do not deserve your patronage. Desert them. Reject them. Teach them some manners by withholding your dollars. When it comes down to it, that’s all they understand – except for their bigotry and their utterly false notion of superiority.

  8. wanda

    February 6, 2014 at 8:36 pm

    I’ll never forget the comment made by Modeling agent Eileen Ford some years ago “if I see a beautiful black face, then I see one.”, in other words, she implied that she rarely saw one. And it’s sad that this kind of racism goes on in Europe, of all places. Yes, American blacks went there to escape the racist attitudes of the United States, back in the day, only as long as it was relegated to music or the arts.

    • Eric

      February 6, 2014 at 9:49 pm

      That’s what they want us to believe, but look at how much money they spend each trying to make themselves look just like us. Also they imitate everything we do. I remember when I was high school, many of the Hispanics were ashamed of speaking Spanish because they were made to feel ashamed but when all of the bilingual jobs became available in the 80’s, all of the white people took classes to learn how to speak Spanish and took the majority of the jobs.

    • Devon

      February 8, 2014 at 1:44 am

      Why are you surprised white people see their own as their standard of beauty?

  9. Yepyep

    February 7, 2014 at 12:31 am

    Black people need to shut the flock up all yall do is talk about it and not be about it. If black people were united we wouldn’t give a shat about issues like this because it wouldn’t have any bearing on us. Open up your own business, buy black other races do not have a problem doing it but oh noooooooooooooo black people think they need to be validated by the oppressor well Im moving on while yall worry about who likes who see ya when you get your shat together black people

    • Traveller

      February 7, 2014 at 3:51 am

      100% Yepyep!!

    • Eric

      February 7, 2014 at 10:34 am

      @Yepyep: I agree 100% with what you’re saying. We love to talk. We love to talk about what’s wrong, what needs fixing, what we should do, what we could do but we never get around to doing it, we just continue year after year talking doing about it. Truth be told, if all of the hatred against black people that has resurfaced since electing a black president, and seeing how they treat him, hasn’t united us, I don’t know what will. If dismantling the Voting Rights Act hasn’t united us, I don’t know what will. If killing our black youth hasn’t united us, I don’t know what will. We’ve been singing “We Shall Overcome” for a very long time, it’s time to stop singing and stop talking, it’s time to start doing. We’ve talked about it enough that we should be able to put our plans into action right now. When we get to the point where we can create and off opportunities to one another, we’ll find ourselves less consumed with all of this racism.

      • Yepyep

        February 11, 2014 at 1:23 am

        @Eric, I like what you just typed so true; we use to be united and now we are further divided. And that’s just the ways some blacks like it truth be told we will never be united because most of us don’t want it that way unity is a beautiful thing maybe the next generation will have less of this to deal with I pray.

  10. Traveller

    February 7, 2014 at 4:06 am

    We shouldnt even care about what these people think, period!

    How long have we been parading up and down catwalks and we’re still treated in this way, shouldn’t we have learned something after all that time by now??

    To some degree I sympathise with the model sister’s plight but on the other hand I have to ask a question; are we actually subscribing to white norms at our own expense in situations like this, are we too preoccupied with emulating white people??

    As well as throughout history when we look at Black expression, from Hip-Hop/Rap Music/RnB music to street fashion one can see how the world consistently follows our lead, yet WE fail to see from this how we can build an industry around what we create??

    We need to stop belly-aching and start building our own!!

    • Yepyep

      February 11, 2014 at 1:32 am

      I agree with you so true but some have yet to wake up and keep sleeping on the watch

  11. Israeline

    February 7, 2014 at 9:46 am

    The control predators only want a few black faces representing so that we can stay in the mind set of we only have a few that are worthy or beautiful enough. Don’t buy the lies, and don’t sell the truth, but
    let God Almighty, God of the Universe “remember us for good”. Rise like the morning SUN and let our light shine. How? First, start speaking and talking to each other. We don’t talk to each other anymore. Communication is powerful. The Great Master proved this.
    Gather together in our communities and make plans to grow our communities with strategic business planning. Then call on the Universal Process for HELP! Never leave the Almighty God out of our lives. HE is the SOURCE which renews us daily. We have everything we need to be sustained as communities. This is our time. Let’s move forward and THRIVE in Love, Life, Truth, Peace, Hope, Faith, Knowledge, Wisdom, Understanding, Mercy and Grace. Second, let us renew our minds and stop protecting the plantation!!!!!!!!! Third, join the SUN = Supreme Universal Network. Those who have ears to hear, please hear and those who have eyes to see please see that this is our time!

  12. DebNBrooklyn

    February 7, 2014 at 11:19 am

    We have designers that speak to our cultures, body types, and pockets. We need to seek these people out – plenty here in Brooklyn – and support them. Let’s make them THE designers for us. Let’s support US.

  13. Ann G.

    February 7, 2014 at 12:30 pm

    They continue to not have Black Models due to our being stupid enough to purchase their products. Leave it on the hanger/shelf etc., and learn to appreciate what our Black designers have to offer. With the White mans love of money that is the only way to hurt them, in their bank accounts.

    • Yepyep

      February 11, 2014 at 1:47 am

      True, I agree buy black but some blacks are so ignorant dropping names of designers who want even employ them and who cares that just somebody name that your making rich. I see women judge other women based upon these high end name brands that the problem blacks are too materialistic but not willing to leave that shat on the shelf and demand respect or even support their own. Oh well I’m off to relax not worry because I don’t buy useless shat with someones name on it to fake being high and mighty

  14. Rev. George Brooks

    February 7, 2014 at 9:47 pm

    Why don’t these CHICKEN NEGROES who have this website list these racist agencies? And go somewhere and learn journalism, because anyone in this field knows that this is an incomplete story. And it just may be a lie to keep something news to stir up us blacks who read this garbage on here, Your Black World, and others affiliated with this one. And they should list them so that black folks can stop patronizing these racist crackers and kinks(Jews). But this Judas website is not men and women enough to stand up against racism. So black folks don’t get mad at the supposedly white racists until we know the full story and all of the facts. But lets get mad at this kindergarten journalism group of this website. — Rev. George Brooks

    • Devon

      February 8, 2014 at 1:32 am

      For a reverend, you stay calling black people names.

    • Devon

      February 8, 2014 at 1:41 am

      Uh huh so while you bumpin’those holy gums, how lets talk about shady revs rippin’ off poor black people for their dollars every Sunday?

  15. Devon

    February 8, 2014 at 1:37 am

    Black people stay begging. Begging the white man to strut on his runway, begging the white man for acceptance, wearing fake azz hair and frying hair to have hair like them, begging for govt help, begging, begging, begging, when are we gonna stop begging when all they do is toss us Scooby Snacks?

    • Yepyep

      February 11, 2014 at 1:49 am

      I prefer beggin strip woof woof lol….

  16. Akhabue

    February 11, 2014 at 12:46 pm

    African-American models should consider working for organisations in African and Caribbean countries.

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