A black woman is locked in a shop window. Object of the desire and envy, she is is being watched by young women who love the look style. But one night, the window broke and expel the black woman outside. For the first time, she is at risk.
I was inspired by the phenomenon of niggerfishing on Instagram and social media, in which white women try to pass themselves off as, or look like, black women. They follow the codes of beauty that are associated with black or mixed-race women in the collective imagination: dark or dyed hair that is curly, smooth or nicely plaited, full lips, made-up eyebrows, a dark complexion, a very fine waist and broad hips. This practice has provoked heated debate about cultural appropriation.
What motivates these women is hazy. Are they trying to appropriate the codes of black culture out of admiration, or for profit? Are they trying to imitate black women in general or just a stereotype of the black woman?
My problem is that these young women also stage a limited representation of black beauty, because they are generally inspired by Afro-American stars (Beyoncé, Rihanna). Some young black women, in France for example, model themselves on these stars, and yet these idols are not representative of all women from African and from the diaspora, or of the problems they have to face every day (misogyny, racism, class denial).