Tuesday, October 13, 2009

“Good” Hair

We need to get to the root of the problems we still have with our hair. Because until we can untangle the mess in our head about what's on our head, we'll never be able to fully appreciate who we are as a people. Black hair, like Black people, in all its various styles and textures is beautiful.

Original Definition

“Good” hair. N. More European than African. Grade A or B only—definitely not C! Straight or loosely curled. Silky. Soft. Gentle. Wispy. Windblown. Preferably shoulder length or longer for females. Bouncing and Behaving. Naturally wavy--pre-Jheri Juice curl days. Relaxers or other chemicals need not be applied, but can be used on C hair to give it the appearance of Grade A or B hair so it can “pass” if not natural. Mimics the white girl toss-and-swing. Straight by any means necessary—axle grease, butter, bacon fat, goose grease. Originated in the antebellum south. Born out of racism. Decisive tool used to pit African American slaves against each other in color caste system of slavery. Product of miscegenation. Evidence of Indian in the family. Lacking kink. Easy to deal with. Compliant. Trained. Mainstreamed. Acceptable. Assimilated. Non Resistant. Superior. Opposite of “bad” hair.

“Bad” hair. N. More African than European. Grade C minus chemical intervention. Definitely D or F. Nappy. Kinky. Spongy. Wild. Wooly. Tightly curled--Home to kitchens and beady-bees. Short, if on a female. Unable to achieve waves even with pomade, brush, and doo-rag. Immobile. Denotes “pure” African ancestry. Hard to handle without aid of chemicals. Non-compliant. Unruly. Screams ethnic. Non-conformist. Antithesis of “good” hair.

Newly Defined

“Good” hair. N. Healthy hair. Well taken care of. Long or short. Straight or kinky. Locked or not. Any texture. Any style. God given. Emancipated. Manumitted. Free to be whatever the wearer wants it to be!

1 comment: