Racial Identity And Gender Identity Essay

Racial Identity And Gender Identity Essay

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When you look up the definition of a “black woman” on Merriam Webster.com the website responds with “the word you entered isn’t in the dictionary… try again.” In my personal opinion I agree with Merriam Webster. The word “black woman” cannot be categorized by one set definition. Not only is it a double minority, but many experiences had by black woman are unique to its population. In reference to the social identity wheel, the gender identity that I identify most with is “female” and “black” is the racial identity that has the strongest effect on how I see myself as a person. When the two words combine it creates a complex being that is hard to understand if you are not walking in my shoes.
What does it mean to be black? A question that is often asked by my Caucasian counterparts, not necessarily to be cynical but to better understand the culture. Usually I give a very textbook definition, due to fact that the topic of my blackness has caused a sense of white guilt and uneasiness even if they’ve done nothing wrong. The topic of being black is one of those elephant in the room situations where nobody wants the topic of slavery or civil rights to be addressed. To break the ice I always start off by answering “yes, my great grandparents were sharecroppers, and their parents were slaves, and yes, I do have cousins who are considered mulatto’s because master took a liking to the house slave”, but that’s beside the point being black has a deeper meaning to me in which it has negative and positive effects on my outlook of the world, but I choose to focus on the positive.
Over the course of my life I’ve heard many negative assumptions about black people, such as they are loud, ghetto, uneducated the list goes on. Although there may be s...


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...s sacrifice and doing what you have to ensure success. A black woman has many roles, especially in my mother’s case because she was a sister, a teacher, a counselor, a doctor, she was my rock. With the help of a lot of other strong black woman they became my village, and each one of them impacted my life in such a significant way.
In conclusion, for the duration of the class I would like to hear the different perspectives on what others feel it means to be a black woman. Our class is a safe haven for open discussion and honest opinions. I hope to learn more about both my gender and racial identity. Through the eyes of others I will be assisted in my journey of self-discovery and further understand how others perceive my culture ,why they perceive my culture the way they do, and how I specifically impact my environment as not only a woman but a woman who is black.

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