The July 2011 issue of Essence Magazine features the first editor’s letter from the magazine’s newly appointed Editor-in-Chief, Constance C.R. White. I miss the Essence days of Susan L. Taylor. This was a time when receiving your new copy of Essence meant not only beauty and fashion tips, but monthly inspiration that left you with a smile on your face. Susan Taylor’s Essence made me feel that my goals and ambitions were worthwhile and that I could honestly accomplish anything I put my mind to. Her monthly “In the Spirit” articles were always exactly what I needed at exactly the right time. That Essence made me feel that someone truly understood my day-to-day struggles.
Since then, the magazine hasn’t had as strong of in impact on me. I’ve enjoyed reading it but I certainly didn’t find it to be profound. Don’t get me wrong, there were certainly some thought-provoking gems in various issues of Essence magazine since then. The previous Editor-in-Chief, Angela Burt-Murray, definitely put her own spin to the magazine. I admire and respect any woman who can take on such a massive undertaking as managing the “Black woman’s bible.” That being said, I’m excited! I love fresh starts. Constance C.R. White seems to have a stellar reputation. I’m looking forward to the magazine’s growth and development under this new leadership.
Here are some quotes that resounded with me from Ms. White’s first letter to her readers:
“It’s hard not to notice that the media is awash in one-note depictions of Black Women. She’s too often portrayed as loud, angry, petty and sexually vulgar. Who is this woman? Where does she live? I don’t know her. She’s not my bestie, she’s not my daughter, she’s not my coworker, and she’s not me. The Black women I know are diverse and resourceful.”
She’s preaching to me already!!!! I have the same exact reactions when I see the media’s depiction of Black women and I talked about that here. It is also one of the reasons for this blog.
“I want you to know that I am committed to working with our team to reflect the truth of our lives in words, images and ideas that uplift and empower us rather than confine us and bring us down.”
I’m smiling now when I read this. Can you see me? 🙂
“Be sure to tell me what you love and what you’d like to see more of. I’ll be counting on you in the months ahead to help us celebrate you and keep it real.”
She likes feedback. I like people who like feedback.
So what do you think? Are you excited like I am or skeptical? I’d love to hear from you.
PS – One more thing, don’t forget to subscribe to Essence Magazine! Not only is it cheaper than buying individual issues, but it is important that we support one another in our endeavors.