The Jezebel stereotype
HALLE BERRY, PERPETUATING THE JEZEBEL STEREOTYPE
A Jezebel is a woman who is sexually provocative and “governed entirely by libido” (Zinn and Dill 1884:267). This is one of the stereotypes that are projected unto Black women.
We’ve all seen the video girls and BF artists (Beyonce and Rihanna) who feel the need to be overtly sexualized in order to be a contender in the industry. Even Halle Berry, a some-what respected, middle aged mother in a committed relationship, felt the need, and I don’t think she was pressured, to “sex it up” onstage at a recent award show.
How can we stomp the stereotype of BW exposing their bodies, being promiscuous or degrading themselves to be considered “hot” or to be noticed?
Having more positive BW in the spotlight who value and respect their bodies and themselves enough not to expose it and/or allow it to be mishandled/mistreated publically would be a great start.
We have all heard the “there are no substantial roles for BW in hollywood” excuse by those wanting to break into the industry but if Tyler Perry is going to be the one responsible for creating black female images and putting them onscreen BW are in big trouble.
Those wanting to get into the movie making industry may want to start thinking outside the box by creating their own stories and production companies. If Mara Brock Akil and Shonda Rhimes can do it, why can’t you? Of course you can’t start at the top, so how about creating a web series/show and posting it on youtube or any of the hundreds of video sites on the internet.
Although I do not know much about Jada Pinkett Smith’s personal life and marriage I know that she has a production company, 100% Womon, and she is busy creating producing and starring in movies and tv shows about BW.