Photo by Robert Altman/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images
Black people have never needed a runway to show off our style (although we serve like Naomi when needed). From Rock Afro, which not only expresses our individuality, but also counters Eurocentric beauty standards, to his dashiki, which sport a display of pride in our African ancestry, we bring style to collective protests and political statements. I took it in.
to celebrate Essence Fashion House And at New York Fashion Week, we’re going back in time to confront statement-making style moments.
Black Panther Party leader Kathleen Cleaver defied the civil rights movement’s more conservative style in 1968 by wearing rocking shades in chic leather.
…and her husband, Eldridge Cleaver (and former Black Panther Party intelligence minister), wore a dashiki when exiled to Africa, inspiring the Panthers to tackle international affairs.
Malcolm X looked sharp while speaking to the press in 1965. Malcolm was no longer an Islamic nation, but its members had a dress code that combated stereotypical images of black people.
Lawyer, actor, and socialist activist Paul Robeson was a stylish Renaissance man. Black men were often portrayed as savages in entertainment, but Robson made them look cool.
Protesters at a march in Washington in 1963. Throughout the civil rights movement, demonstrators wore Sunday vests to represent the movement with dignity.
Marcus Garvey, founder of the largest black organization, UNIA, was known for his military uniforms.
Civil rights activist Dorothy Height (left) didn’t say a word about her hat. They had such a distinctive look that they won their own exhibition “Dorothy Height’s Hats” in Florida in 2017.
https://www.essence.com/news/fashion-week-black-style-protest-statement/ Revolution Stylized: 7 Blacks Release Fashionable Protest Statements