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Wednesday, 5 April 2017

#AtoZChallenge - 4-5-2017 - Letter D

D for Dusky

 The D-word is still an iffy term for us in India. It conjures up centuries of slavery in the recent past, and if we go back a couple of millennia, dark skin is again associated with the indigenous  people who were conquered by a fair, and allegedly more civilized race.

Our gods Shiva and Vishnu (and his incarnations Rama and Krishna) were supposedly dark of skin. They are depicted as blue skinned in popular art. Maybe the artists could not bring themselves to actually dip their brushes in black paint!

Be that as it may, the concept of beauty is still skin deep, literally. Obsessed as we are with light skin, fair still equals lovely. Matrimonial ads still want a “wheatish complexion”. The whole world might beat a path to India to get a genuine tan, but we Indians will guard ourselves with sunscreen and parasols. Someone with a few more melanin cells is automatically looked at askance. Pregnant women still have coconut milk, saffron and almonds, not so much for their nutritional value, as for their claim to bringing forth a fair baby.

On the ramp and in print ads, a few dark-skinned models have established themselves. However, if our very own former Miss World suggests that her picture in an international fashion magazine was airbrushed to look a couple of shades lighter---well nothing could be less fair!

Unless Dusky is genuinely accepted, how can we hope for a new Dawn?


  1. Gee I had no idea, that was still going on in India. As a fair skinned blue eyed Scandinavian-american, I love brown skin. I mean, what is so special about the pale skin?

    If you get a chance, stop by my blog. Thanks.

    Why are so many people checking into their DNA ethnicity?

    GENEALOGY - Why are so many people checking into their DNA ethnicity?