Princesses with Kinky curls, hazel nut skin or darker hues and honey deep eyes.

www,activepens.com
The first black Barbie. Debut in 1980

"Mom, you can't be a Princess with that hair!" He giggles and continues " Princesses don't have braids! They have long blonde hair!"...he goes ahead to describe Rapunzel's hair and looks. Lol!!

This was what my little boy told me after I just had my hair beautifully braided and hubby called me a Princess. 

Immediately, I knew I had work to do. That the still images of what is defined as "Princessy", the pretty long-haired girl with a dazzling diamond tiara, just like when I was growing up, have found a way into the minds of our newest African generation. 

How? Primarily through books and media. The dreamy sea blue-eyed Princesses we see in books and in cartoons has a way of instilling in a child's mind, acceptable prototypes of Beauty, Princessey and  Princy.

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After the episode with my son, I looked up brown Barbie dolls with afros, curly hair and braids and was elated to see some @Queen of Africa doll shops, Beautiful black Barbie dolls, Disney Princess Toys Fashion Dolls with Sparkling Clothing and Accessories Inspired by Disney Movies, Disney Fairytale Designer Collection Tiana and Prince Naveen,  and Baby Alive Princess Ellie Grows Up Interactive Baby Doll with Accessories.

This is part of the work we have to do! No other human, race or colour can do this for our "African generation NeXt" than ourselves. 

We have lots of books to write, lots of rhymes to write, lots of kids' songs to write, lots of lullabies to write, lots of cartoons to make and lots of stories to tell...to include in the kids' world definition of  "Beauty", the African child type of beauty. To make the next generation of Africans know and believe from birth, in their own kind of beauty. In their own kind of Princess. A Princess with kinky curly hair, hazelnut skin or darker hues and honey-deep eyes.

It is as simple as that. It is as complex as that.

Jumi Eniola
Ontario
Photo Credit: Black History


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