The commentary is still flowing concerning Florida’s Republican Lt Governor Jennifer Carroll and her jacked up comment in the midst of her unfolding same gender sex scandal that women who look like her don’t engage in ‘relationships like that’.
And the hits just keep on coming. T.F. Charlton penned an AlterNet article in which I was quoted and linked to along with Tami Winfrey Harris.
I had the pleasure of meeting and talking to T.F. Charlton during the 2012 edition of Netroots Nation in Providence and here’s a taste of her article:.
Black women as a group have long been framed in dominant American
culture as essentially unfeminine. In what Monica Roberts has called the
” black unwoman meme,”
black women are unfavorably compared to a feminine ideal rooted in
white cultural norms: white women are “considered the paragon of virtue,
fertility, beauty and femininity.” As a foil to this romanticized (and
misogynistic) image of the angelic, respectable white lady, black women
are widely stereotyped as promiscuous, bad mothers, unable or unwilling
to land husbands, unattractive, angry and threatening. In short, black
women in the popular imagination are so outside the scope of normative
femininity that we are less than women, even almost men. Our bodies and
lives are held up to intense scrutiny and routinely found wanting in
t’s in this context that Carroll’s comments read as a dangerous
validation of racist, misogynist policing of black women’s bodies and
lives. Carroll perhaps unwittingly frames herself as the polar opposite
of stereotypical images of black womanhood: a faithful wife and
dedicated mother who doesn’t look like women who “engage in
relationships like that.” She equates being a black woman who is
“properly” feminine in appearance and behavior not only with being
straight, but also with being respectable. She frames her accuser’s
femininity as suspect and even ridiculous by comparison. ” She’s
the one who’s been single a long time,” she points out, insinuating
that it is her accuser, Carletha Cole, not Carroll, who should be
suspected of being queer — i.e., not a proper black woman.
It definitely deserves a signal boost, and not because I’m quoted in it.