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December 21, 2010 / admin

Is Something New Responsible for the Increase in Black Women/White Men Relationships?


Something New: the Romantic Drama/Comedy that opened the eyes of many Black Women and set off the alarms for Black Women and White Men to start dating… or is it?

Black Women and White men have been dating and marrying forever, but it’s no secret that the numbers of these couplings have increased over the last few years. Just look around you and you can also take a look at our unscientific poll.

It is also undeniable that movies and the media is a large influencer and trendsetter. Trends are born and die all the time because of widespread exposure to the public through television, movies, the internet, magazine, radio programs, and of course, now blogs.

So, should we credit the movie with this distinction or not?

Something New seemed to be aimed at a Black audience, so if White Men weren’t going out in droves to see the film one could argue it didn’t have any effect. I would submit a different line of reasoning to you.

Even if White Men didn’t see the movie en masse, it was released in theatres all throughout the United States and starred the beautiful Sanaa Lathan in the lead role. Commercials for the film aired regularly leading up to the opening of the movie and previews for the film played before in movie theaters which made the subject matter visible to plenty of White men who happened to get to the theater early/on time.

Furthermore, many White men find Sanaa Lathan very attractive, as a quick jaunt over to her IMDB page will prove, therefore seeing her paired with Simon Baker in advertisements and commercials must have registered on some White Men’s radar’s.

In the film and trailers Sanaa is portrayed as a beautiful, classy, highly successful and smart professional woman. It is revealed right off the bat that women like her, at the top of their game, are the most likely to be single because of not being able to find a Black man on their level *the ideal black man*. While some complain that this focus on Professional Black women might be a bad thing, I think putting the spotlight on the 42%, at the time, of women who had never been married clued some White men in on the large amount of beautiful and smart Black Women available who just might go for a guy like them. At the same time, we got to see Black women being portrayed in a positive light as opposed to many of the stereotypical “ghetto” portrayals of BW in movies.

But where I believe the film had the most effect was with Black women. Black women are the majority of the movie’s audience and if they paid attention, they got the lesson that it’s okay to love a White man regardless of what your friends or family might say at first, after all Kenya’s friends did come around. In the process the film tackled the myth of White Men not being able to work it out in the bedroom or understand the plight of the peculiar injustices/hardships (work place drama included) that some Black women may experience. We saw Kenya’s outlook on life changing for the better (she loosened up) and we also saw the appreciation Brian had for Kenya’s natural beauty (she “ditched” the weave).

I believe many of Black women woke up and realized how silly it was to turn away the advances of men based on their skin color, because I think the reason the numbers aren’t higher is simply because plenty of Black women had (and  unfortunately still have) their dating options stuck in a time warp. I bet after opening weekend plenty of Black women were smiling, making eye contact or generally making themselves more approachable to White men because they were open to the idea – and in turn entered into relationships with these men.

Finally the film started a much needed conversation amongst Black women. Many of the women that the film resonated with started blogs that catered to helping other Black women open their dating options in real life and/or proudly posted videos on youtube of their interracial relationships (this set included younger black girls) and/or discussed the film with their girlfriends.

These blogs are still alive and kicking today, spreading the word to those who were formerly “nothing but a BM” and didn’t know any better. So, I do believe the film played a very important role for the increase in Black women/White men relationships that we see today. Thanks Kriss Turner!!!

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What do you think? Post your comments below

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8 Comments

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  1. Tasha / Dec 21 2010 3:27 pm

    I totally agree with the theory that this movie opened the eyes of black women to other options in the dating dance. I personally didn’t entertain the possibility of dating someone of a different ethnic group until the movie premiered and I realized it was even a viable option.

    • admin / Dec 21 2010 4:18 pm

      Hi Tasha. Thanks for your response. Now, only to get more movies like this one made!

  2. jai / Jan 3 2011 11:25 am

    It would be nice to see a movie like this from a white man’s perspective, we never got a chance to see his(Brian’s) family and friends reactions. Considering hollywood is run by white men it should be no problem giving the “green light” to projects like this.

  3. Cinnamongirl / Mar 12 2011 3:48 am

    Media gives some people who are self conscious about social standards- permission – so they feel okay about dating outside of their DNA. I myself, never gave a hoot about what anyone thought about what I did or whom I decided to date. In retropsect, I found myself dating and mating by “vibe” and attraction and their color was just coincidental.

  4. Heidi / Apr 22 2011 4:26 pm

    I appreciate this article because i am tried of the media only showing black male and white female in relationship. It always pissed me off that anytime a black male want to date a white female he degrade black female to do so. I am black and married to a black man for 20years and our love is grand. Honestly speaking if death should part us, i can say that any other relationship will be out of my race. black men of today seem to only love themselves and don’t appreciate the color of their own skin, besides, BW/WM relationship and marriage last longer than BM/WW because they relationship is usually based on love and not on a myth.

  5. michaella / Jul 16 2011 7:48 pm

    i think this movie althought with the right intension fails the woman is light skinned if you notice so are those around her so for a black woman who is dark skinned this movie is more like the world laughting at you its basicly saying white men will only go for lightskin women

    • brownskinbeauty / Jul 31 2011 11:52 pm

      I dont think her nor her friends were light skin. Sanaa Lathan is not light skin. Maybe light in comparision to someone with pitch black skin but in comparision to most black people in the united states she falls in the middle. Alicia Keys is light skin. Tisha Campbell is light skin. Regardless if the movie had’ve featured someone dark, it could also say white men only go for dark skin black women which is actually a stereotype anyway. Sanaa has brown skin and black features, who cares what shade of brown? Stop seperating yourself by shade. I highly doubt there was any intention to make dark women feel bad about themselves. Sorry im just so sick of hearing about skin shade.

  6. Amera / Feb 21 2012 11:06 pm

    I truly enjoyed this movie and although I have dated men of all races, I find myself attracted to white men mostly. Love is Love and the color of one`s skin shouldn`t matter.

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