Episode 51: How Colorism Hurts

Straight-up racism is bad enough—but for many of us, colorism cuts even deeper. Maybe we were born with skin tones darker or lighter than those around us, making it hard to fit in, feel beautiful, or even to claim our own Blackness. Maybe we’ve seen how differently society treats people of color, based on skin tone… and how easy it is to turn those “preferences” on ourselves and our peers. It’s not something anybody likes to talk about, but we’ll never heal from colorism if we don’t call it out. In this episode, we share some of our own experiences with shade-prejudice, within the Black community and beyond; consider where it all came from, and how we can grow past it.

The podcasters:

  • Cierra Britten (host), University of Cincinnati
  • Kylie Bridgeman, Walnut Hills H.S.
  • Enock Sadiki, Aiken H.S.
  • Tasnim Saad, Aiken H.S.

Conversation recorded on Zoom Nov. 7, 2021

Learn more:

Click here for a report on a recent Pew Research Center study of how colorism affects Latinx Americans.

Click here for a look at colorism within the South Asian community.

And here’s an episode on colorism from the WGBH public affairs program Basic Black, recommended for anyone seeking a greater understanding around this topic.