Black Women RISING

Quvenzhané Wallis, The Youngest Oscar Nominee For Best Actress In A Leading Role Ever was referred to derogatorily by a “news source”. Gabrielle Douglas, the first woman of color in Olympic history to become the individual all-around champion, and the first American gymnast to win gold in both the individual all-around and team competitions at the same Olympics, was criticized about her hair… and First Lady Michelle Obama for her arms and so on, However the mark of greatness remains. 

Certain media attempts to scrutinize the excellence of black women does not compare to the glory and momentous achievements they’ve accomplished over the last decade. The complete disregard for the ignorance and the noise is a testament associated to their strength, confidence, and determination for better.  Black women have made an astonishing transformation in the areas of renewal and self-actualization over the past century, and risen from the ashes of a broken, and perilous American history.

From historical disregard that created an almost literal non-existence, Black women in America have created value and established an Imperial cultural identity. Gaining strength from the very same force from which we we’re seemingly caged: being unidentified or otherwise irrelevant in mainstream media, black women are making corporate and professional advancements, but also triumphs in cinema and entertainment.

Stanford University Graduate Issa Rae single-handedly raised over 100,000 dollars in funding for her “Mis-adventures of an Awkward Black Girl” Series. Shonda Rhimes writing talent has produced an ardent fan base and ratings successes never before seen in history.  There is now such a massive emergence of black women innovators, icons and outlets that it’s impossible to ignore.

Esteem has definitely come along with the influence and creativity, The Natural phenomenon that’s sweeping the nation is no coincidence, more black women are embracing their “natural beauty” as well as authentic cultural styles. In the essence of freedom and the spirit of progression black women are achieving a worth that’s epic.

We are changing the landscape of society and ourselves, so why have some in society chosen to remain stagnant to the fact, why do some media outlets still seek out illusory flaws? Could Dr. Maya Angelou’s declaration be more than poetry? Did she foresee the trend of incredible black women rising and predict the plight of their relationship with these trivial outlets, because her words seem to assess the situation more than accordingly:

“You may write me down in history

With your bitter, twisted lies,

You may trod me in the very dirt

But still, like dust, I’ll rise.

Does my sassiness upset you?

Why are you beset with gloom?

‘Cause I walk like I’ve got oil wells

Pumping in my living room.

Just like moons and like suns,

With the certainty of tides,

Just like hopes springing high,

Still I’ll rise.

Did you want to see me broken?

Bowed head and lowered eyes?

Shoulders falling down like teardrops.

Weakened by my soulful cries.

Does my haughtiness offend you?

Don’t you take it awful hard

‘Cause I laugh like I’ve got gold mines

Diggin’ in my own back yard.

You may shoot me with your words,

You may cut me with your eyes,

You may kill me with your hatefulness,

But still, like air, I’ll rise.

Does my sexiness upset you?

Does it come as a surprise

That I dance like I’ve got diamonds

At the meeting of my thighs?

Out of the huts of history’s shame

I rise

Up from a past that’s rooted in pain

I rise

I’m a black ocean, leaping and wide,

Welling and swelling I bear in the tide.

Leaving behind nights of terror and fear

I rise

Into a daybreak that’s wondrously clear

I rise

Bringing the gifts that my ancestors gave,

I am the dream and the hope of the slave.

I rise

I rise

I rise.

Whether they were written directly for black women or not, Dr. Angelou’s words are a testament to an unbreakable, unconquerable spirit that’s only built from an unyielding faith. Black women have come into the age of astute self- recognition, recognizing our own beauty, excellence and worth. With every triumph, they are being released from the oppressive spirit of conformity, being elevated to making more than an impression, but making a great impact on the world. Everyone, no matter what race, who adopts the sense of true purpose, value, and Identity has the same key trait to succeed. Embracing nothing more than the power that gives us life, we rise… and will continue to do so.