When reading other perspectives, it’s sometimes difficult to spot harmful stereotypes. Hell, I’m not perfect, I’ve too fallen victim of celebrating books, TV, etc that features annoying racist tropes.
I think it’s important for people to know the difference between culture and stereotypes and so here’s the top 4 black tropes I’m tired of seeing in books.
**And I would like to note that this is in my personal experience as a black woman.**
Token Black Friend
Have you read a book that features a white main character who has that sassy/comic relief black friend? Or are they the black friend that rises above all the negative stereotypes and becomes the Oreo of the group (white on the inside black on the outside)? Folks, that’s your token black friend. I’ve been one, I’ve seen them on TV, I read them in books. It’s annoying and I’m begging for this trope to finally end.
The White Savior
Probably my favorite. Are you reading in a white perspective that helps a black person rise up against adversity No black (POC in general) don’t want White people’s help. It’s not beautiful, it’s not inspiring. It implies that Black people are incapable of succeeding without a white savior. Also, there can be POC heroes too. Shocker!
The Strong Black Woman
Oh, this is my most hated one for a number of reasons. I know that the trope name should be a compliment towards black woman but it’s actually the opposite. People (non-black people) who believe that black woman are supposed to be this “strong independent black woman who needs no man” *snaps fingers in z formation* actually makes it seem that black woman doesn’t go through depression, anxiety, etc. It makes it seem like black woman are supposed to be strong 27/7 and that if we show a hint of weakness, we are no longer “black.” Throughout my whole life, I felt like I had to hide my mental illness due to society’s image of the strong black woman (whoops getting a little ahead of myself). I’m a big advocate on POC and mental health so this trope is my biggest pet peeve.
Using Coffee to describe Black Skin
Get your venti iced skinny mocha macchiato, sugar-free syrup, extra shot, light ice, no whip ass out of here please.
What other culture stereotypes are you tired of seeing ? List them down below!