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Kim Butler, a data editor from California who moved to Germany in 2011, pushed back on the argument that Europe is a solution to black female singlehood on her blog last year.
She could readily name all the women she's taken to Italy who are currently in relationships with, or married to, Italian men.
But black men are more than twice as likely than black women to marry outside their race, perhaps because stereotypes about black men and sexuality increase their desirability — while comparable parallels aren't often available to black women. ' I love my black kings, I'm holding it down!
According to some advocates of interracial dating, unlike black men, black women face a unique pressure to date within their race."Black women are the community," said Christelyn Karazin, founder of Beyond Black White.com, author of Swirling, and creator of a new interracial dating show Swirlr, told me via Skype. ' Meanwhile, so many of us are so miserable and unhappy and think that we don't even deserve to be happy — that it's about being black first and a woman never." Karazin, who also spearheaded a controversial movement advocating against single motherhood in the black communtiy, describes tangled and knotted long-standing ideas about black desirability and femininity — or, the supposed lack thereof.
To get you to start thinking about dating interracially," Weaver says warmly. I first came across the encouragements to go to Europe and "swirl" when I was a junior in college preparing to study abroad in Sweden.
"There are a lot of incredible men out there, yes, you know you want a brother. Though I cringe to admit it now, I was excited by the possibility of a semester spent flirting with Swedes.
"It's like what Alice Walker said: We're the mules. The slave trade turned black bodies into objects of toil and labor, and made black women's bodies desirable largely in the context of rape, which allowed slave masters to exert further control over them.
Slapstick mammies made exultant, toothy-grinned claims on the screens of early 20th-century cinema, their large and lumbering figures merely vehicles for laughs.
While "in a perfect world love would be blind," she wrote, in the United States — and its polarized racial landscape in which black is essentially bad and white is essentially good — our romantic decisions are also political ones, whether we'd like them to be or not.
The practical, not the political, was certainly the driving force for Weaver when she founded Black Girl Travel.
As a painfully self-conscious biracial woman, I had struggled to date at an Ivy League school, and studying abroad was as much an escape as it was a necessary academic endeavor for an international relations major.
But I am also a European Union citizen, born in Hungary to a Hungarian mother and Nigerian father, and my optimism was tempered by the reality of my experiences living and traveling in Europe, experiences that taught me I was both Other and object.
In America, with the exceptions of nearly exclusively light-skinned celebrities, to desire a black woman is to reach your hand into the bottom of the beauty standard barrel.