The Image of Sexuality in Color

Minorities in this country have very little power and are very vulnerable to any social issue. When dealing with body image minorities are affected even more compared to whites in society. Women of color in the United States are pressured to fit their stereotypical roles. Many of their stereotypes have roots from their culture or country of origin. Other times these body image expectations are fabricated from people in power within society. This can be specifically applied to Latina and African American women, since their bodies represent more of the hourglass image. The hourglass figure is greatly desired, honored, and attractable to many. African American and Latina women are stereotyped as being seductive, very loud, and very sexual. They do this by wearing very little clothes, dancing seductive, giving attitude to anything, and using sex to their advantage. Their roles in movies, shows, and commercials are consistent which reaffirm this expectation to the viewers. For example in the movie 2 Fast 2 Furious, Eva Mendes uses her Latina flare and beauty to seduce the Cuban drug dealer into believing that she was not an undercover cop.

This is also an issue in music videos specifically from hip-hop and reggaeton artists. The women in their music videos dance very seductive, many times they are used as an object, they wear very little clothes, they are submissive, and follow and do whatever the artists pleases in the video. For example the music video “I’m Still in Love” from Sean Paul portrays the women as very seductive when they dance in their room, at the nightclub, and throughout the video.

All of these images send a very strong message to young girls in our society especially to women of color. Due to this women of color think that sex and their body will get them what they desire, which does not take into account their character and intelligence. Their style of dancing and fashion reflect the media’s influence. For example the fashion line from the rapper Nelly includes “apple bottom jeans” which emphasizes women’s butt. These jeans are seen everywhere especially on young African American women. These examples are just a few ways women of color are more pressured to look a certain way by society. Latina and African American women are not the only minorities that are affected however it is seen more often.