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They were still describing the pain and humiliation they felt as women with nappy or “bad” hair, or the preferences and privilege they knew as women with wavy or loosely curled “good” hair.
A black trans man recounted the freedom that he felt when he transitioned in high school and no longer had to control his hair as a black girl would, fearfully running away from the rain and avoiding swimming pools.
They had reclaimed natural hair despite self-doubt and rampant rejection.
Going natural is still hard for many black women with kinky hair.
Kaepernick should trim his hair to look “clean cut” and “presentable” — suffered from Stockholm syndrome; the “Black Panther” actress Lupita Nyong’o criticized Grazia U. magazine for retouching a cover photo to remove her natural hair; and Davina Bennett, Miss Jamaica, won second runner-up in the Miss Universe pageant while daring to wear a spectacular sundial Afro.
The record-breaking “Black Panther” is the sensational popular example, a visual anthem for this moment.
Paramount for us, as in the #Me Too movement now, was the emboldening recognition that we were not alone.
When I stopped straightening my hair — as a way of affirming my worth despite mainstream messages to the contrary — I had the support of an emotional, intellectual and political community.
Despite and perhaps because of a surge in white supremacist language in the United States, a wave of black cultural resistance is flooding the arts as well as the streets.In Wakanda, the techno-brilliant African nation of the Marvel film “Black Panther,” black warrior women don’t wear wigs.Compelled to conceal her shaved head to carry off an undercover mission, General Okoye, played by Danai Gurira, calls her flowing wig “a disgrace” and discards it the instant she draws her spear to battle the bad guys.There is a rich and varied digital discussion of black natural hair care, thanks in part to the early-aughts natural-hair movement, when digital innovators like Curly Nikki (Nikki Walton) and Afrobella (Patrice Yursik) recorded their transition from straightened to natural styles and offered hair care tips to thousands of followers.Chris Rock released the HBO documentary “Good Hair” (2009) and expressed the wish that his daughter would treasure what is inside her head instead of what grows on it.The hair director for the film, Camille Friend, said in an interview with The Cut that she insisted on natural hair for the actors and drew on Zulu, Masai, Hima and Afropunk looks. The fiber artist Sonya Clark has produced the elegantly stylized Hair Craft Project, which features black hairdressers as craftswomen whose intricate art form is the braid.Regis and Kahran Bethencourt of the Creative Soul studio in Atlanta have created an “Afro Art” series featuring African-American children with sculpted natural hair and elaborate costumes.It was a difficult choice, and it was possible only in a context of black female friendships and the shared epiphanies of a feminist collective called The Rag.The women on The Rag (yes, we thought we were quite clever) met on the Radcliffe campus to discuss our emerging understandings of feminism, and black feminism in particular.The general and her royal guard of female combatants, the Dora Milaje warriors, are among a cast of characters graced with gorgeous natural hairstyles that imbue this film with the visual power of holistic black beauty.The movie weds a Black Nationalist aesthetic to an ethos of global kinship.