Grown too soon!
If we only had media images as a source to define how we view ourselves, as African American women, we would be lost. Lost, is how I feel many of our pre-teen and teenage girls are. I attended a CIAA event this year in support of a friend who is promoting young music groups. This particular group was a male hip-hop act and they couldn’t have been no more than 18 or 19yrs old. As the small groups of teenage girls started to pour in I began to see a trend. They all resembled clones of “Basketball Wives” and “Real Housewives “(of any city). They were only modeling the images of that are flooding their televisions and the internet. As we have been reading and discussing the categories and label associated with black women (e.g. mammies, jezebels, breeder women, aunt jemimas, prostitutes, and welfare mothers), I wondered in which direction these young ladies were headed. I fear that they will allow the projected images to define who they are, but I also understand that I am looking at them only from the outside. I mention this issue because it makes me wonder where the teenage years are; or do these girls go straight into adulthood from pre-teens?