Fatima Lodhi, the first Pakistani and the youngest Asian to take a bold stand against COLORISM by launching “Dark is Divine” which aims to redefine the unrealistic standards of beauty that have been set by the societies.
Millions of organizations out there are chanting the slogans of equality, but have you ever thought that how can we even talk about “Equality”, until and unless we stop comparing one woman from another on the basis of her physical appearance and start appreciating her for who she is and not for how she looks. Why do we weigh her importance on the basis of the unrealistic beauty standards?
Some may call it Colorism or Shadism, but it’s the most ignored -ism in the Asia region. It is the worst form of discrimination and occurs where more preference is given to the lighter skin tones, and the darker skin tones are considered to be less appealing or presentable. And this discrimination is found between people belonging to the same race.
Colorism & Perfect Body Image Syndrome is so much ingrained and so much in the sub-consciousness of the people that they are not even ready to accept the fact that they do discriminate each other on the basis of the color of one’s skin, size and shape of the bodies. This discrimination is found almost everywhere in the world, be it in the form of Colorism or Perfect Body Image. Women are unfortunately treated as a commodity. They are judged by the clothes they wear, the structure of their bodies and most importantly by the color of their skin. Those with dark-skins and not having petite bodies, long heights face many issues like, when applying for front desk jobs, such as receptionists, air hostesses, TV anchors and etc. are told that they are not suitable for such jobs. All other such kind of alien treatments they get in this so called fair society which doesn’t like the dark skin tone and believes in different beautifying products and not happy with their looks because they are always bullied by their peers and receive rude comments regarding their appearance . Even mothers are always in search of light-skinned, petite structured and heighted daughter-in-laws and are rejecting those who don’t fit to the definition of being “Perfect bodied”.
Colorism and the perfect body image was taught to us in the form of stories like snow-white, sleeping beauty, Cinderella and ugly duckling and we are still teaching the same lessons to our kids, instead of teaching them “Diversity”. Pressure is exerted on us since childhood. Kids are also told by their mothers, not to play in the sun else they would get a sun tan. Grand-mothers are always telling their grand-daughters to apply herbal pastes so that their complexions get “IMROVED”. Since ages Light-skin & Petite bodies are considered the ambassador of beauty and our media is playing a huge role in conveying such messages in the form of biased advertisements of the skin-lightening creams which actually has created social inequality and a huge psychological impact.
The “Fairness craze” and “Size Zero Craze” is increasing day by day and it’s really sad how girls are bleaching their skins in response to COLORISM and also going on crash diets for attaining the so called “PERFECT, ZERO SIZE FIGURE”!
The role Media has been playing is shocking. Media has blind-folded us in such a way that we are not even able to distinguish the images that are shown to us in the media and in different beauty magazines are the modified editions of reality!
Why being dark-skinned, having an “XL” figure or a short height is considered an oddity? Why can’t we learn to celebrate diversity, uniqueness and respect difference?
Men as compared to women were never made conscious about their color but recently the trend has changed since products like Fair men have been introduced and therefore men are also becoming a major part of this “Fairness Race”.
All such discriminations pushed Fatima to start an anti-colorism campaign to give confidence to those who have become victims of something they are born with!
There was no proper platform before, where people could raise their voices against Colorism and let others know that how rejected they feel when they are told that they are a misfit because the shade, shape and size of their bodies are not according to the so called beauty standards that our society has set for us!
Then in 2013 a proper movement by the name of “Dark is Divine” was launched by Fatima Lodhi, who is an anti-colorism & Diversity advocate. A campaign that aims to transform Asia, Africa and other regions (where colorism exists) into such regions where the skin color, body shape & body size of a person ultimately has no importance. The campaign envisions a society in which equal treatment is given to everyone irrespective of the color of their skin, size and shape of their bodies. Dark is Divine aims to do this by redefining the so called Beauty standards and the definition of the “Perfect body image” that have been decided biasedly by the society.
Dark is Divine believes in celebrating diversity, uniqueness and respecting the difference.
It is a movement designed to ignite a conversation to effect a positive change in the way people are reflected in their respective societies on the basis of their appearances.
Through different awareness sessions, it has and still aims to free the society of discriminatory mindsets and to prove that respect for all is important. Dark is Divine has already conducted several sessions on “Celebrating Diversity”, “Positive Body Image”, “Self-Acceptance” & “Media Literacy”. It has also conducted awareness drives across the Asian countries.
Fatima strongly believes that “Dark Is Divine” will help redefine the connotation of word “Dark” and help people come out of the inferiority complexes which they have regarding their body image!
Fatima adds that “Beauty” doesn’t come in any predefined shade, shape or size; therefore be confident about who you are and how you look, because you are “DIVINE”
For more information about the “Dark is Divine” campaign visit the Facebook page.