The global case of skin bleaching and the Western ideal of beauty

(Left) Image of a vintage advert for Nadinola Bleaching Cream, (Right) Artra skin tone cream advert in Ebony magazine 1963.
(Left) Image of a vintage advert for Nadinola Bleaching Cream, (Right) Artra skin tone cream advert in Ebony magazine 1963.
(L) Vintage advert for Nadinola Bleaching Cream by Envisioning the American Dream, (R) Artra skin tone cream advert published in Ebony magazine 1963, (pg.107)

While this long read is primarily based on skin bleaching, it’s impossible not to write about the influence of Western standards of beauty in its entirety as it stems from promoting society’s belief in whiteness as the most beautiful and worthy of respect and admiration. A quick google search (eg. type beautiful women), proves the common sentiments of who is deemed attractive. It’s evident, spreading and pervasive influence sets a precedent in these conversations. They both go hand in hand, intertwined in a union that can’t be ignored as it has affected many aspects within society.

The issue of colourism…


Were you already aware about it?

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Garden of Earthly Delights (1490–1500), painting by Hieronymus Bosch. Image by Wikiimages from Pixabay

This is quite a sobering read, apologies in advance.

Throughout various points of our world history, doomsday proclamations have been made about the end of the world. We had the Mayans predicting that earth will cease to exist on December 21st 2012, Nostradamus prophesying that the end of the 20th century would be a period of chaos, trauma and transformation, and American psychic and astrologer Jeane Dixon (who predicted President John F. Kennedy’s death and President Richard Nixon was said to have followed her predictions), foretold that an apocalyptic ‘war of armageddon’ would happen in 2020. Mere coincidence? Or just…


It’s getting out of hand

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Image by Hannes Edinger from Pixabay.

Like every other buyer, I read through product reviews before potentially making a purchase. It’s paramount to do so to avoid returning things that don’t meet expectations. However, I’ve been coming across a lot of one-star reviews from buyers not because the products had minor issues like a scratch etc but because they are fake. I don’t know when this shift started as I’ve only recently become fully aware of the dodgy things happening on the site.

Over the years, Amazon made it more accessible for people to sell things on the site and be their own entrepreneurs. Although, the…


Once the biggest star of the Jazz age but when she stood up against racism and segregation, the establishment blacklisted her and her name vanished into obscurity.

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Hazel Scott in 1956. Photograph by James Kriegsmann, New York / Public domain at Wikimedia Commons.

Part two from the series I started on my instagram page Art History Talks, to commemorate Black History Month.

This post is about the iconic Trinidadian-born jazz pianist, actor and singer Hazel Scott. Throughout her outstanding career as a performance artist, she was always a champion for civil rights, speaking out against racial discrimination, state violence and oppression, even at the cost of her own career.

Born in Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago on June 11th in 1920, to a West African father scholar from Liverpool and classically trained pianist and pianist mother, Hazel and her mother moved to Harlem, New York, in 1924. From a very young age, her mother (Alma Long Scott) saw that her daughter…


A Brazilian warrior and Quilombo leader

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A bust of Zumbi dos Palmares in Brasilia, Brazil. Photo by Elza Fiúza for Agência Brasil / Public domain at Wikimedia Commons.

A series I started on my instagram page Art History Talks, to commemorate Britain’s Black History Month 2020.

Whilst researching for iconic black figures to write about for my art page, I realised that many of their stories are largely forgotten or whitewashed. Yes Art History Talks will feature a handful of their stories but as it’s primarily an art page, I can’t completely divert to the usual things I post about. Instead, I decided to start a blog on Medium where I can write as many of these incredible black people and their stories in all of its glory…


Is time running out on celebrity culture?

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Published by Corpus Christi Caller-Times-photo from Associated Press / Public domain on Wikimedia Commons.

I recently came across the song ‘The Cult of Personality’ by Living Colour and was not only blown away by the musical artistry (who said black people can’t do rock), but the lyrics rang astonishingly true leaving me pause for thought. Even though the song came out in 1988, now more than ever, it’s relevance speaks volumes today:


How the Raft of the Medusa shines a light into the elite establishment of 19th century France

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Théodore Géricault: The Raft of the Medusa (Le Radeau de la Méduse), 1819, from Encyclopaedia Britannica by Age Fotostock

Today’s art world considers The Raft of the Medusa painting one of Théodore Géricault’s greatest works. It’s also regarded as one of France’s most celebrated work of art.

When it was first exhibited in 1819 at the Paris Salon, it received a mixed reception. Some were fascinated by the macabre nature of the painting while others were disgusted by all the dead bodies depicted. It was a far cry from the classist art genre that was celebrated at the time. Maybe it proved too real for them? No one wanted to buy the painting. …


Why do they constantly throw sensationalised news stories at the public to the detriment of others?

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Photo by CJ Dayrit on Unsplash

After sitting on the sidelines and observing troubling stories circulating in the media– occasionally ranting about it on twitter, I’ve decided it was time to put my thoughts together regarding the press treatment of Meghan Markle and other public figures. Here it goes:

THE UNITED KINGDOM HAS A TOXIC PRESS CULTURE.

Yes you read it right in bold. By now, pretty much everyone knows about the media’s behaviour with Meghan Markle and co, and more recently Caroline Flack. If you haven’t, I suggest doing a quick google search to put you up to date with this area of conversation.

Throughout…


The world famous festival has built a reputation known for its decadence and excess. Yet, its rich history is often forgotten in the news.

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Photo by Peter Molnar from shutterstock

We’ve all seen the colourful and extravagant images of Rio carnival either through experiencing it in reality or on our TV screens, in newspapers, online and in magazines. Floats, scantily clad samba dancers shining like golden cherubs from their well-oiled bodies, dancing with joy and elation through movement and joyous sounds.

Hundreds of drums such as the tamborims play a vital part in the bateria (samba band), and other instruments beating in rhythm of the music. Everyone sings along to the theme tune of the samba schools parading in the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro.


The brilliant film by Bong Joon Ho reflects the extreme inequality of South Korea– a fact that is prevalent elsewhere in the world

Warning: some spoilers ahead

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The main cast of the film. Image from Amazon

First of all, what an amazing film Parasite is. A film of so many layers, it’s hard to find a genre to categorise it in. But maybe it doesn’t need to be put in a category? The film elegantly interweaves the economical situation of the country, the politics (think the bunker scene story), family dynamics, dark comedy, and suspense. I went to the cinema without knowing anything about the film, except from being drawn to the ominous sounding one worded title.

While its easy to point fingers at the characters and blame them for their actions…

Emi Eleode

Writer and visual artist // I write about culture and societal issues with a focus on the effects of colonialism, globalisation and capitalism.

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