Am I a ‘house nigger’?


It’s no secret that I have a bit of a wild side. I’m like a walking Lana Del Rey song on Friday nights; the only things I’m missing are a lover as old as my father, a heroin needle in my sock drawer, and traces of cocaine on my one hundred dollar bills.

On Friday nights, I walk out of my house in the illustrious Fox Hall drenched in red lipstick; or rather a more fashionable matte plumb lipstick, and an all black mini dress. I go out to parties and bars. I drink fancy cocktails I didn’t have to pay for and schmooze with America’s elite. I wear $1,500 bags and shoes. Weekend bus trips to the mountains to party with IFC fraternity boys were not something I thought to be particularly out of the ordinary in my life. Hell, I once threw up in the back of a finals club at Harvard when I was a teenager. If that doesn’t scream privilege, I don’t know what does.

I can only have a wild side because I have privileges that extend beyond my wildest imagination. Upon birth, I was given a popular 90s name. I went to a private prep school for my entire primary education and now I attend one of the most prestigious and selective universities in the world. I can recite Shakespeare. I was groomed to be proper; to speak structurally accurate English and to eloquently and strategically use my voice.

To top it off, I’m advantageously beautiful—not in the traditional Eurocentric sense—but in a way that makes it easy for people to relate to me. I have big, dark brown Bambi eyes, little pink tinted lips, perfect teeth, and a non-threatening nose.

That’s all right and dandy; but power structures—I’ve been thinking a lot about power structures.

Am I the white man’s fantasy? Am I… a fucking house nigger?

I can’t help but notice how people who are otherwise completely dismissive of blacks, will reference me as a sort of salvation for my whole race—MY WHOLE FUCKING RACE. For God’s sake, I’m one human.

I can party with the “bougie”. I can keep conversation at a polite level of interesting and provocative. I can blend into a room. I can tell a good joke. I can fuck without getting pregnant.

Is my very presence hurting the perception of black stereotypes by way of rigid juxtaposition? God, this is not what I intended. I love my culture; Am I brainwashed?

But, then again, we as black people are not secular. We are as dynamic as any other person is allowed to be. Perhaps, I am changing the perception of the limitations of black culture.

Can a house nigger change the perception the master has of the potential, ability, value, and preciousness of all the niggers? Does my wild side invalidate me as a credible source to the master? Am I a joke or am I changing the world with my unapologetic freedom?

This is going to eat me alive, isn’t it?

the little princess herself
the little princess herself