This is a letter from a woman from Ghana.
**Please note that I am not saying that this is the feeling all over Africa. This is what I have found so far. I am conducting an ongoing search so I will keep you posted. In the meantime if you have any information to share on the topic. Please do.
The Tale of One African Woman
By: Abukari Yakubu
Repost from Modern Ghana Today5/23/10
What a shame? It is even sad to realise that, our own so-called intellectuals and those in respectable positions who should know better tend to share similar ignorant notion of beauty by allowing their wives to bleach, undergo skin surgeries, hair extensions (using hairs of white and Asian corpses etc.) A case in point is the sudden death of the wife of the former Nigerian president Olusegun Obasanjo, who died whiles undergoing surgery to extend her nose and others in Spain. In my heart of hearts, I have not seen any woman more beautiful than that of the African woman.
Many Africans have been poisoned and brainwashed into thinking that the genetic beauty of a European woman is better than the genetic beauty of an African woman. There is no standard or colour which is better; there are only physical and physiognomic surface differences. These differences, in the Africans case being the kinky hair, wider noses, thicker lips, considerable buttocks and high levels of melanin in our pigmentation are what give us our different cultural identities and natural make-up.
As a matter of fact, a lot of blacks from the Diaspora are shocked when they go o Africa and witness this, because they consider Africa to be the source of blackness; the genesis of black pride and black beauty. But bleaching creams are big business in Africa. One would not think that colourism exists in Africa but it does, just like it does in the USA where light skinned Africans are considered more beautiful and better than darker Africans. In Ghana for example, it is not unusual to hear people say “this particular ethnic group or family are so black!” with a derogatory expression as if being the colour of charcoal were a crime. Many women who are not born light-skinned will use artificial means to lighten their skins; even to the extent of using clothing bleach which does lighten their skin, but also has detrimental results, including burning and scarring their skin. To make matters worse there are numerous African men who encourage this practice and buy the products for their women. Such is the psychological damage to many African women that they think that their darkness is a stain.
source: Modern Ghana Today