Around the globe, every part of the continent has people with different textures of hair, from the straightest hair to the curliest forms. On daily basis maintaining your natural hair becomes a tough routine for anybody. Has your mother ever yelled at you for using chemicals on your hair, for example, for colouring or ironing it? Don’t you all agree that our major concern for our natural hair is not getting damaged?
Now, imagine meeting certain social norms in the community, for instance, the authorities expel you from attending public events and you are highly criticised because of your hairpiece which is regarded as not following dress code or rules. How would you feel?
In America, hair oppression is termed as texturism or hair discrimination that degrades afro hair so as racial discrimination for colour.
In today’s article, let’s talk about why the creation of Hair Love, a seven minute animated short film that won ‘Best Animated Short film’ at Oscars 2021.
**Disclaimer** if you haven’t watched the movie. Before any due, please treat yourself. (Also, I appreciate the production team of the movie for making it free to watch on YouTube instead of selling it to any OTT platforms).
The Hair Love is the visual form of the book both written and directed by Matthew A. Cherry that gives a positive outline representation of Afro American’s oppression for having kinky hair i.e., the natural hair of the African Population through self-confidence and pride for having it.
The plot of the movie revolves around the African father struggling to make his daughter’s hair for a special occasion, it paints the picture of the struggle of Afro-Americans with kinky curls.
Here, the father battling with his daughter’s hair in a boxing ring is pictured to be people fighting back with the government to take severe actions and provide support to the black community.
Instead of talking about the characters and emotions dealt with it. Here are few real-life scenarios of black people.
In January 2020, a black teen boy was suspended for not following his dress code and he was restricted from his high school graduation ceremony for having a dreadlock as a hairstyle. https://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/black-texas-teen-told-cut-his-dreadlocks-order-walk-graduation-n1120731
The worst-case scenario is many black students were penalised for their hair alone. This is called natural hair discrimination.
Also, a recent study conducted by the soap brand company Dove found that a black woman is 80% more likely to change her natural hair than a white woman to meet social norms or expectations at work.
It is was very heartbreaking to know about the sufferings. It is very unfair to see events as such. I can’t imagine being in black’s shoes. Not only does it talk about it.
The movie voices out and supports the CROWN ACT (Creating a Respectful and Open Workplace for Natural Hair) that stands against this discrimination and marks it to be illegal.
Creating movies like these for the audience based on entertainment and education value can help to bring out a change in the world.
Indians have curly and wavy hairs too. While reading through the comment sessions on YouTube, I found many Indians thanking the Afro YouTube influencers for sharing their daily routines in maintaining frizzy and curly hair. Let’s not forget we did not choose to be dark and have kinky, curly or wavy hair. I don’t know when the world is going to reflect and accept individuals for who they are.
Ps: Let me know, what you think about it.