I’ve known about this documentary for some time and have watched it a few times. It deals with the increasing practice of bleaching the skin to achieve a lighter/brighter skin tone. Why? Well, we could look back at slavery and who was designate for field work and house work, which lies at the heart of the internalized racism that is insidious and pervasive aspect of Jamaicans’ collective conscience. We could look at the active practice of colorism that shuts out people who are of a comparative darker skin tone from employment opportunities that would mean upward mobility.
If you choose to watch the video, you will hear the word pretty being used. Pretty in Jamaica is not an issue of facial or proportional aesthetics, it is an adjective that used to differentiate between those who have more evident Caucasian ancestry and those who don’t. Those who have more caucasian features, such as lighter skin, straighter hair, and eyes any other shade than dark brown, are designated as being pretty–Nevermind if the person looks like the upteenth coming of Freddy Krueger.
Either way, watch the video…it breaks my heart, especially for the women as I am a Jamaican woman. It breaks my heart that darker skinned Jamaican women and other women of African ancestry feel themselves to be less than–I won’t even begin to touch on the issue of having kinky/nappy hair.