Skip to comments.Michelle Obama Slave Image: Racist Art?
Posted on 08/29/2012 10:39:17 AM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife
Slavery is bad. Hadn't you heard? The vast majority of African Americans with Southern ancestry are the descendants of slaves. Didn't you know? And Michelle Obama, the first lady of these United States, is no exception. Were you not familiar with that narrative? If not, the Spanish publication Magazine de Fuera de Serie would like to remind you with a cover of Michelle Obama as a half-naked French slave.
...I'm going to go out on a very sane limb here and argue that Michelle Obama will probably not love this. Since the Hottentot Venuses, African women whose "exotic" features were displayed like animals in zoos in 19th-century Europe, black women's bodies have been fetishized. Their bodies weren't perceived to have emotions or feelings. They were the physical embodiment of objectification. Sure,the Portrait d'une négresse seemed to reach beyond that narrative, but it lay firmly in the era of battling ideologies over a black woman's naked body, like public turf and not private property.
So literally painting one of the most recognizable black women into that canon is an obvious no-no. It's why Michelle Obama's nude seems more insidious than Percheron-Daniels' Photoshops of Queen Elizabeth and Princess Di. Those two women have the security blanket of a history that ostensibly sought to protect their white bodies. Michelle Obama and women who look like her have none of that.
But why should you care? I'd never heard of Magazine de Fuera de Serie before its offensive cover landed in my inbox........
I have to live in an increasingly shrinking world in the skin I was given. I've been to Europe more than once and experienced "the eyes" that black women whisper about. The stares follow you from plaza to café to discotheque -- curious, unblinking and, most of all, hungry....
(Excerpt) Read more at theroot.com ...
What a truly odd article.
A very partially clad black female painted (by a woman) in 1800 France is somehow a symbol of racism in America.
She makes little or no attempt to explain why this painting means what it does, but apparently it has something to do with partial nudity and the model not being given a name or other identification.
As if white nudes were never painted, or white models were always given full and complete credit.
And what is this weird bit about “the eyes.” Does she seriously think all men track her convinced she is some sort of hypersexual person because of her skin color?
Yes, attractive women are followed by men, but it is almost always admiring, not threatening.
"Mrs. Andrews? Dr. Rosenfeld will see you now."
She took the long way ‘round the barn (not a racist comment or a reference to animals, just an expression) to make her point that America is a racist country. I don’t know why the soft peddle but then she’s went to Columbia and hangs with that crowd.
Lately, everything is racist.
They’re going to wear it out.
There was a nude of Sarah done too.
That came to mind, and there is a stripper somewhere near the convention that bills herself as "Nalin Palin." (then there was all the nastiness about her daughter and other conservative women). But the author presses the point that white women weren't historically bared for public consumption like black women were.
She feels Americans hide their racism, while the French are overt with theirs.
Bottom line - any comment, any “art,” anything that can be used for political gain is fair game and always will be to race hustlers and poverty pimps.
Those who nibble on the edges and like to write artsy articles to find a new way to express their outrage over past wrongs, truly do themselves no good.
The author of the article seems very self-absorbed, but this cover is offensive.
white women weren’t historically bared for public consumption——
we don’t talk about the underground slave trade here.
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