Monday, May 10, 2010

R.I.P Lena Horne

I had the biggest crush on Lena Horne when I was in high school so my heart sank this morning when I found out she died yesterday at the age of 92. Her life story is incredibly inspiring and she was very elegant in every endeavor she undertook. R.I.P

I've included a clip of her performing "Stormy weather"

My identity is very clear to me now. I am a black woman. I’m free. I no longer have to be a ‘credit.’ I don’t have to be a symbol to anybody; I don’t have to be a first to anybody. I don’t have to be an imitation of a white woman that Hollywood sort of hoped I’d become. I’m me, and I’m like nobody else. "

- Lena Horne ( NY Times)


  1. damn. my first time reading your blog and i hafta find out sista horne has passed away?!?!?

    hollywood is still locked into its light-skinned-black-woman-as-sex-symbol-syndrome but she helped open the doors for dorothy dandridge, pam greer, halle berry, etc.

    if only they would make 'wonder woman' into a movie and cast alek wek in the leading role i'd be a happy man!

    great blogsite Afrika...

    RIP ms. horne.

  2. upfromsumdirt, thanks for the comment. I really appreciate it. Yeah, I would be very happy to see beautiful women like Alek Wek and Angela Bassett in more mainstream roles with wide appeal. Just look at Viola Davis for example. I mean she is a powerhouse actress. Her five minute appearance in Doubt is one of the most powerful performances of the decade. However, she hasn't had any good work since then. Even Meryl Streep said during her SAG acceptance speech that Hollywood should give Viola Davis good roles because she is phenomenal.Hollywood has come a long way but it still have a long way to go.

  3. Hi Afrika,
    How are you?
    It's so sad. However Lena Horne lived to 92, that is a blessing. She is an icon, a beautiful one too.
    On the other issue, I hate the whole light skin/dark skin thing. I believe it all boils down to self loathing. Over here, many of the Jamaicans bleach their skin to make it lighter. Imagine putting bleach on your own skin. They end up looking like the zombies from Michaels Thriller video.
    My older sister picked up my Nigerian father's complexion, whilst I picked up my Guyanese mother's lighter complexion. Growing up, we never even saw the difference and we still don't. When Djimon Hounsou first came on the scene, I totally drooled over his beautiful complexion - I call it black platinum.
    Hollywood needs to represent, but I can't see that happening anytime soon.