BLACK VOICES

Franchesca Ramsey Breaks Down 3 Stereotypes That Plague Black Women

Not all black women are "sassy."

05/17/2016 01:52 pm ET

The Jezebel. The Mammy. The Independent Black Woman.

These are all stereotypes that have plagued black women for centuries, which helped to perpetuate the idea that black women can only be one of three things: sex-crazy, sexless, or "sassy" and "aggressive."

But in a new installment of MTV's "Decoded," writer and activist Franchesca Ramsey breaks down just why these stereotypes are harmful -- and why they need to just die already. 

In the five-minute clip, above, Ramsey outlines how slavery, colonialism and racism have ostensibly contributed to how we view black women as "sexually aggressive," and she cites shows like "Amos and Andy" for creating the prototypical "sassy black woman" character, later seen in everything from "The Jeffersons" to "Martin."

"As much as we try to deny it, media plays a huge part in how we view the world," Ramsey explains.

"When 70 percent of black women say that they fear their coworkers perceiving them as the 'sassy black woman,' and then attempt to change their personalities to fit in, don't 'cha think it's time to retire the stereotype?"

Then Ramsey ends with an important point: 

 

Watch the full clip above.  

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