Negro: ‘Pelo Malo’
The implications and dynamics of ‘pelo malo’ or bad hair and good hair are examined by women and men from all over the Americas and Africa. What do these terms mean? How are they interpreted and ultimately what attitudes do they reflect?
I feel like there was some really good discussion here but….I am wondering why the whole thing was framed around the dominican salons and the latin@ concept of pelo malo, even when talking to ppl who werent latin@. like ok if you want to study that go ahead but as someone not from their culture you have to be careful and not try to frame the discussion to meet your political agenda. i felt like some of the questions to the latina women were a bit leading to kind of beat up on the anti-black culture of latin america. its like we all have this problem and our stuff isnt even entirely in order so who are we too beat up on the easy target of the dominicans. especially when the focus shifted to the discussion of african american women. like we have plenty of horror stories in our own salons before we go beating up on them. and this is coming from someone made to feel awful in a dominican salon or two in my time. I mean yeah anti-blackness is bad in latin america but its bad everywhere and a lot of black scholars go there and study it while acting like its some crazy brand new phenomena. Ummm boo we know exactly what bad hair is. We have used and in many cases continue to use the same language here.
On a different note I also found it interesting that a lot of the more euro/ indigenous looking women (and some of the more black Latin@’s too i think) were able to gloss over some of the racial aspects more easily. because of how race politics works in those countries no doubt and also because i dont think the messages applied to them in exactly the same way. just something random i took note of. i think this needs to be taken on by competent Latin@ women who can frame the discussion within the context of their own society while also taking it to the level it needs to go and not glossing over anti-blackness.
Not taking shots at the ppl who put this together but i see this happening a lot, it makes me think of Gates, and I have had several conversations with Latin@ women about this type of thing. But yeah it was a really good discussion and piece. one of the best Ive seen as far as relating women’s attitudes towards hair.
especially the bolded.