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Don't Play in the Sun: One Woman's Journey Through the Color Complex Paperback – January 4, 2005
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Top Customer Reviews
I didn't, however, give the book five stars for tackling such an important subject. I gave it 5 stars for the author's subtle handling of YEARS of heartbreak, disappointment and "forced coping". I gave the book five stars, because Golden so carefully layers and allows her own personal beauty to spotlight the fact that color prejudice is both insidious and cancerous. Amazingly, Golden does this without rage or reciprocal hate.
By hating the darkest of black women...we are essentially proving that we ourselves have become White Supremacists who hate the womb of our beginning and ALL BLACK PEOPLE. What could be more important for black people in 2004 to wrap their minds around?
I myself come from Sudan and was put up for adoption at age 8 by my Egyptian grandmother...because she felt that my skin color was "too dark" for me to be included in my father's Egyptian family after he and my mother were murdered for protesting slavery in SUDAN.
I am the child of a "charcoal colored" African beauty and an Arab father.
Naturally, the trauma of such a rejection and such an event cannot be conveyed with mere words, but as a mother of 2 young boys who will someday be grown black men...Read more ›
And in this book, by Marita Golden, we read how those of color pass on messages to their children, that from a child's view is an attack. From an adult view, it is both a warning of how one is measured by those in power, and it is something that is blindly passed on - not questioned, just accepted as fact, much like the unspoken messages that generation after generation mothers pass on to their daughters about their limitations.
I selected this book because I read, years ago, "Migration of the Heart," and "Skin Deep," by Ms. Golden. And I continue to be moved by her written messages. She speaks to your soul!
As a child, I do remember conflicting messages of, "Go outside and play," shortly followed by, "If you stay in the sun too long you will be too black."
"Too black" in the 60's, during the Civil Rights Movement - at times when we were saying, "Say it loud. I'm black and I'm proud?"
Yes. It was a statement unconsciously spoken. And it continues to be spoken, whites worry about the dangers of tanning salons, and blacks search for ways to "blend in."
Another reason why I was drawn to this book is that Ms. Golden uses Zora Neale Hurston's (read "Their Eyes Were Watching God," and her other books) messages from the first page, throught the book, to encourage change.
Thank you Ms. Golden, for telling your story, and for believing in your purpose, and for contributing to race relations being an inside job.
Marita Golden tells of the difficulties she had as a dark-skinned black girl in color-conscious Washington DC in the 1950s and the failure of the Black Power movement of the sixties to effectively destroy colorism in Black America in particular.
She also adds some telling commentary, as a world traveler, as to how darker people in the rest of the world still use dangerous bleaching creams to improve their low condition in life.
As a dark black man who was a teenager in equally color conscious Charleston, SC in the 1980s when people forgot that black was beautiful, I can relate to much of this book. But since looks do not play as big a role in the life of adult men as it does women and having had a Dad who taught me black history at an early age and understanding the ignorance of the naysayers, I have moved on from this.
I do not fault Ms. Golden for the effects this has on the way she sees almost everything. people tend to respond to oppression and trauma in different ways. In fact, I think she is to be commended for articulating why it is so difficult for many Black people (especially those of her generation) to just "Get Over It." While I am more Bill Cosby than Micheal Eric Dyson and am against wails of self pity and "excusism," it is true that growing up being completely devalued as a human being since childhood can either make you sink or swim, and not all will swim.
One thing that took me for a loop in this book was her belief that while she felt Black men who dated white women were self-hating, it was okay for her to date the Frenchman Marc.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
A lot of ideas and issues discussed resonated with me as a lack British born women of Caribbean Jamaica can heritage ... Very thought provoking!Published 1 month ago by Kindle Customer
Heartfelt exploration of standards of beauty, and how historically, and world-wide, Brown girls are considered less than the ideal.Published 11 months ago by lessie scurry-genis
I enjoyed the book.. Thought provoking ... Reminded me of years ago when my adult daughter was a child and in the toy stores she did not want the black doll, I was traumatized... Read morePublished on July 25, 2014 by verlaine d quinniey
Great Book. Good clear and easy to understand. It's the Truth. Up close and personal and in your face. This book keeps it real.Published on January 26, 2014 by bgks372
This woman isn't even dark-skinned in my opinion. She's just another African American who's stuck on color, wishes she was lighter or white and she's not. Poor baby! Read morePublished on January 11, 2014 by C. Smith
this is a subject that i always think should be addresed because the problem still exists. This problem has caused the African-American's experience in this country to be unique... Read morePublished on November 17, 2013 by gwendolyn jackson-mccollough