Winnipeg filmmaker Joanne Roberts has been told her skin is too dark by other Filipinos.
In her new, short film I am, Roberts probes the effects of such comments on her own sense of self-worth and her own struggles with shadeism.
Roberts and filmmaker Alex Decebel-Cuza created the short film for CBC Manitoba’s Creator Network, which works with storytellers from across Manitoba to tell their stories.
Roberts on her film:
I am a woman of colour, the daughter of immigrants, and a first-generation Canadian.
In my experience, Asian culture and beauty revolves around Western standards. Light skin is beautiful and dark skin is ugly.
I used to be pressured into beauty products that erased my Asian features and lightened my naturally tan skin. But these teachings and societal norms — are they really true?
In summer 2020, I had the pleasure of sharing space with the most wonderful group of Brown womxn (an inclusive term that welcomes all trans, non-binary and gender-queer people) from all over the world during the Shades of Brown Girl Creative Storytelling Workshop.