The Wakanda Effect

The Wakanda Effect is the name that has been given to the #blackgirlmagic that has been taking over the September magazine issues. For the past couple of decades, melanin was scarcely on magazine covers for the sole reason that it won’t sell. This theory has since been debunked over and over again as Beyoncé pointed out in her Vogue cover spread. "When I first started, 21 years ago, I was told that it was hard for me to get onto covers of magazines because black people did not sell," she said in a personal reflection for the iconic magazine. "Clearly, that has been proven a myth."

The September issues of Vogue, Porter, Elle Canada, Marie Claire and Glamour all display a black woman on the front of their issues. The fact that these issues have such a positive response debunks the theory that once held so many black women from acting positions, modeling career and representation in the media. This phenomenon is similar to Marvel’s “Black Panther” which proved to be a large success and opened many viewers’ eyes to the representation in media and how different cultures could still be “sold”. "I'm returning to this to point out that last September (Vogue) had Jennifer Lawrence on the cover," he tweeted. "When they put Rihanna on in June, sis outsold. People are more interested." Said Mikelle Street in a tweet towards this subject.
Representation has been a hot topic for years, making this years’ cover spreads all the more important and a cause for celebration. In the past, women of color were mocked for their skin tone and were often whitewashed in magazine covers. The media often preaches that white is more beautiful and any individual that did not fit the magazine’s view of beauty simply was not worthy of society’s attention. September’s covers of the black women enunciate their natural skin tone and features and do not numb out any features that were once considered unflattering.
This September changes this completely. Beyoncé, a 36-year-old African American mother of three is on the cover of Vogue magazine. To further celebrate representation, this cover is the first that was shot by an African American photographer. Representation such as this opens doorways to the younger generations who have individuals who look like them in the media and can serve as role models.
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