Stereotypes

Beyoncé’s ‘Becky with the good hair’

“Even if she’s referring to another woman of color, “to critique her as a Becky is more than just like, ‘You’re a cheater.’” The insult cuts far deeper, she says: “It re-encodes her as a white Becky.”
— Rebecca Kinney

“I totally believe that as a savvy artist, Beyoncé picked a particular name, and she picked a name that is never, ever associated with women of color,” says Rebecca Kinney, an assistant professor in the department of popular culture and the school of cultural and critical studies at Bowling Green State University. “That’s what I also find fascinating about the speculation that she is Rachel Roy, who is South Asian.” Even if she’s referring to another woman of color, “to critique her as a Becky is more than just like, ‘You’re a cheater.’” The insult cuts far deeper, she says: “It re-encodes her as a white Becky.

“Becky is not only positioned outside of black culture, as in Sir Mix-a-Lot’s intro where the two white girls are clearly not the focus of his attention or part of black culture,” Simone Drake, an associate professor of African American and African studies at Ohio State University says, but “Becky is also the epitome of a beauty aesthetic that excludes black women.”

The complete history of ‘Becky with the good hair,’ from the 1700s to ‘Lemonade’ | Fusion