The Invisible Voice: Angry Black Women

By Brittany Barnes
SC Staff Writer

Living as a woman in America is difficult. We are confined by social norms and an unfair set of attitudes. We’re faced with a high level of expectations and an even higher level of assumptions.

If a woman chooses to focus on her career rather than family life, she has her priorities wrong. We must marry, bear children, and be the primary caregiver to the children and home.

A woman cannot not be in a leadership position without being perceived as a “bitch,” for lack of a better word. If a woman is tough and not emotional, she is masculine and must be approached with caution.

Although being a woman in America is difficult, as a black woman you are faced with even more obstacles and stereotypes.

Being black and female, you are bound to the expectations of being a woman and labelled with words, stereotypes, and prejudice for being black.

Before I begin, I do not speak for all people. Overall, this is how black women are seen in the media and society. It’s nothing we all haven’t seen or heard before.

Black woman are loud, ghetto, angry, and have too much attitude. Those are some of the more popular stereotypes.

Black women are seen as undesirable and unattractive. A black woman cannot speak her mind and have opinions without being considered angry or having an attitude.

Narissra M. PunyanuntCarter did a study on the how black people are portrayed in the media. She states, “African American stereotypes that exist include being disrespectful, uneducated, violent, greedy, ignorant, and power-driven.”

She also noted the difference between black women and white women: “Black females were typically perceived as low achievers and white females were typically perceived as less dominant than Black female counterparts.”

To escape the “angry black woman” stereotype you must be passive and submissive, especially in relationships.

I saw a documentary a few years ago titled “Diary of a Tired Black Man.” It depicted why black men choose to date white women or non-black women.

An underlining principle in the film was that white women are more submissive than black women, therefore white women are more desirable.

Opinions, feelings, and expressiveness are all unpleasant traits to have. Be quiet, shut up, and do what a man tells you do.

You should have no reaction to anything and be mindless to avoid being an angry black woman.

On SingleBlackMale.org a guest posted an article as to why he likes non-black women. He states, “Our [black] women tend to be arrogant and dismissive.”

Black men are increasingly stating that they prefer to date non-black women or do not date black women at all.

I saw a post titled, “Why black men are not attracted to nappy haired black women” on RealNewspaper.com. I choose not to read the article because I didn’t want to read what he had to say about us “nappy-haired” black women.

Black women are looked down upon within our own race, that’s what makes black women different from other women. Light-skinned black women are portrayed differently than darkskinned black women in the media.

And black people have their stereotypes about each of these groups, which is called colorism. “You’re too pretty to be dark-skinned.” I have never heard this before since I am not “dark-skinned,” but I have heard multiple people say this to my sister and friends of mine.

Being dark-skinned is associated with being unattractive and more angry than your typical black woman. Lighter blacks are associated with being smarter, wealthier, and happier. Another tip to stop being an angry black women is be lighter.

In movies and television, light skinned actors are casted in lead roles. They are usually in upscale positions like lawyers and doctors. While darkskinned women are typically casted as some who is a “hoe” or “crackhead.”

While all women earn about 78 percent less than men, black women earn about 90 percent less. They even earn about 63 dollars less per week than a black man.

Black women are constantly looked down upon, shamed, and ridiculed but have no right to be angry. We are paid less, expected to do more, and still have no right to be angry. Being angry is a luxury black women just cannot afford to have.

Email Brittany at:
bbarnes1@live.esu.edu

Leave a comment