The Motley News

Kinky Vs. Curly

3 Comments

In my short time of learning and reporting on natural hair, I have come to the startling realization that there is a hierarchy within the natural hair community. Even though women might have similar views on what “natural hair” means, they are still separated by the physical look of their natural hair.

According to this young lady, she felt discriminated against because her hair didn’t look kinky/tightly coiled/ethnic enough. It sounds insane to write, but you can listen to her story yourself:

So the alienation that natural haired women experienced dealing with straight hair women, has turned inward. Within the natural hair community we have pitted one woman against another. It has come to the point where this “loose curled” woman is voicing her experience of feeling alienated from the “kinky haired” sister.

Nothing about this should sound terribly surprising, it just sounds tired. As black women, we’ve already experienced the hierarchy of skin color within our race. It all comes from holding on to what little power we have in society. Some of us are unaware that were are all stuck in the same “black female boat.” So instead of climbing all over each other in order to gain some imagined power, we should give a leg up to our sisters, so we can all gain real power. United power.

This divisiveness within the natural hair community makes us sound like a joke. It makes us sound like we don’t have our act together and perhaps we are the exact opposite of acceptance. I respect the woman who straightens her hair and I respect the woman who wants to keep it natural. Because, at the end of the day, we’re all women. Doesn’t that speak volumes more than curl type?

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Author: Charish Halliburton

Writer and Editor for The Motley News

3 thoughts on “Kinky Vs. Curly

  1. Wow! You can really feel her frustration. I agree that this is an issue in the natural hair community.It seems like if others are not hating on us , we're hating on ourselves. You're right… we're all women, and that should be more than a curl type. Btw, I gave you two the Versatile Blogger award. Thanks for blogging 🙂

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  2. Yes, this is very true. A recurring issue year after year. There are all kinds of divides with the “natural hair community” from those who think locs aren't natural to those who will never wear a big afro because it is too wild. There are those who still refer to loose curls as “good” hair and kinky hair as “other” and there are those who will always be natural, but will always cover it with weaves and wigs because they are ashamed to wear their own hair out and face public scrutiny…great post!

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  3. @1Blessed, thank you for your words and for the award nod. I'm coming over there to check that out!
    @Yasu, you're exactly right about the dreads argument, it's unfortunate ignorance that we're dealing with. It just tires me out after awhile, yeah?

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