When I hear the term Social Climber, it forces me to pause and reflect on a number of experiences I have had. I will be the first to say that being labeled a social climber was considered insulting around the circles I was more familiar with during elementary, middle, and high school. However, in college, things are and have been for some time, extremely different. I have heard stories about social climbers on HBCU campuses, but at my PWI, social climbing is highly important. The difference is most people (this includes the general population of white students) go about things stealthily. I have chosen to be a social climber because I believe it will assist me in acquiring the lifestyle I seek to live. Everyone has different expectations of what Living Well means. Social Climbing may have nothing to do with Living Well for some of the young black women who read this blog. However, for those who do wish to seriously ascend in class and social status, I wanted to point you in the direction of a wonderful BWE blogger's new post:
Please do not allow some of the unfortunate comments from anonymous individuals to distract from what the post says. It could come in handy for many of the young up and coming black women who are determined to live well. Also, Sara explicitly mentions some of the tragic things happening to young black women around their last years of college, regarding unplanned pregnancy by a low-quality male (most often a black male at that). DO NOT LET THIS HAPPEN TO YOU LADIES! Bundles of joy are indeed adorable, and great to kiss and cuddle. BUT, children to unmarried, single, BLACK mothers suffer unnecessarily. The potential for them to live well is so low it cannot be mentioned here.
Interesting and potentially empowering find: I read a text on free colored women of the Americas and immediately zeroed in on the Story of a Creole (in this context, creole only meant an individual was born in the America's and not Africa, it had nothing to do with skin color or race as we know it today) slave woman and her interracial marriage to a British overseer in the mid to late 18th century on the island of Jamaica. Please be aware that North American scholars often fixate on rape being the only thing happening between black women and white men, but through my research of the Caribbean, the relationship between black women and white men is indeed quite complex. I certainly do not do justice to the story, but a very brief summary entails how this woman used her influence over this man to not only secure her eventual freedom, but the freedom of her children, and acquisition of economic wealth, including land ownership. In the harshest of times, this woman found a way to socially propel her way to a better life than the one she was born into, and I see no reason why I shouldn't be able to do the same. The book is called: Beyond Bondage, Free Women of Color in the Americas
edited by: David Barry Gaspar & Darlene Clark Hine
Check it out at your local library or campus library!
About Young BW Determined to Live Well
After being a faithful reader of various blogs dedicated to positively influencing black women, I recognized quite a few young black women in their teens, 20's, and 30's who were touched by the message as much as myself. This blog is my attempt to reach out and connect with young black women on issues we may be facing at a very transitional time in our lives. I encourage all, irrespective of age, class, origin, etc. to participate in the discussions and brainstorming sessions we have. I look forward to the potential of this blog and hope to hear from Young Black Women Determined to Live Well like myself!