Edited by Azizi Powell
This post showcases the 2006 India Aire song "I Am Not My Hair" and provides the backstory about how that song came to be mentioned in an instagram that was written after the 2015 Oscar award event.
The content of this post is presented for informational, cultural, and aesthetic reasons.
All copyrights remain with their owners.
Thanks to Zendaya Coleman for her powerful comments and thanks to India Arie for her musical legacy. Thanks also to all those who are quoted in this post and thanks to the publisher of this video on YouTube.
Zendaya Coleman Responds to Giuliana Rancic’s Comments About Her Lock Extensions Looking Like They Smelled ‘Like Weed’
The actress gave the fashion host a lesson on hair politics.
By: Yesha Callahan, Posted: Feb. 24 2015
"Over the last couple of weeks, Zendaya Coleman has been experimenting with different hairstyles. She’s worn a short pixie cut, which people clamored over, and during the Oscars she decided to opt for long dreadlock extensions. Although she received her fair share of compliments, Fashion Police host Giuliana Rancic said she felt like “she smells like patchouli oil and weed"...
Feb 25, 2015 Zendaya Speaks Out After Her Dreadlocks Are Criticized at Oscars
E! hosts declared that she probably "smells like patchouli," or "weed."
By Victoria Dawson Hoff
"At the Oscars on Sunday, Zendaya Coleman paired her sleek Vivienne Westwood gown with a change-up in hairdo: After rocking a pixie cut just days before, the actress sported dreadlocks on the red carpet. She looked totally gorgeous, but like most others who walked the carpet, found herself subject to the commentary of E!'s Fashion Police on the show's special Oscars edition on Monday night—and subsequently, a major social media debate.
Giuliana Rancic mused that Zendaya's hair made her "feel like she smells like patchouli," before adding, "Or weed." The exchange promptly triggered an Internet firestorm as viewers slammed the hosts for being racially ignorant...
But then Zendaya took to Twitter herself to respond to all the controversy, noting that "there is a fine line between funny and disrespectful," and that there is already enough "harsh criticism of African American hair in society without the help of ignorant people." "To me," she stated, "Locs are a symbol of strength and beauty, almost like a lion's mane."
Zendaya also wrote in her instagram about this incident:
"I suggest that some people should listen to India Aries :I am not my hair”and contemplate a little before opening up your mouth so quickly to judge."
Click those links given above for a full story about this incident, including the apologies that the commenter gave to Zendaya and her other response to those apologies.
SHOWCASE VIDEO: India.Arie - I Am Not My Hair ft. Akon
IndiaArieVEVO, Published on Jun 16, 2009
Music video by India.Arie performing I Am Not My Hair. (C) 2006 Motown Records, a Division of UMG Recordings, Inc.
Sierra Mone, 2014
"India is not trying to imply dont like WHO you are by saying you are not your hair or skin. She just means that these things are features about you that should be of little importance when someone is trying to figure out WHO you are. Shes saying that its the soul Or the inside that really counts not just our outsides. In this society we tend to judge soley on looks but shes saying that there is more to us than meets the eye. Dont judge me based my hair or my skin color but on who I am inside."
LYRIC EXCERPT "I AM NOT MY HAIR"
I am not my hair
I am not this skin
I am not your expectations no no
I am not my hair
I am not this skin
I am a soul that lives within
What'd she do to her hair? I don't know it look crazy
I like it. I might do that.
Umm I wouldn't go that far. I know .. ha ha ha ha
Good hair means curls and waves
Bad hair means you look like a slave
At the turn of the century
Its time for us to redefine who we be
You can shave it off
Like a South African beauty
Or get in on lock
Like Bob Marley
You can rock it straight
Like Oprah Winfrey
If its not what's on your head
Its what's underneath and say HEY....
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