Lizzo’s Emmys Speech Celebrates “Big Girls” And Highlights The Importance Of Representation


The sky’s the limit. That’s what a lot of us hear growing up, as we daydream all of the different scenarios of what our futures could look like. We can do it all! Become astronauts and ride meteors through space. Become president and make chocolate-chip pancakes a staple dish at every meal. Become an actor and shine brighter than anyone on the red carpet.

It’s easier to imagine it all when you’ve seen someone else succeed in such endeavors. Especially when that someone looks like you and is praised and admired openly. You can take that building block and attach it to your understanding of the world. You can be president, you can be a princess, you can be beautiful and admired.

Lizzo, who won an Emmy, delivered an acceptance speech which resonated with many. Delving into the topic of representation and its importance in a child’s life, she recalled the time she wished to see someone like her in the media. Now, many will be able to.

To go a little further, we’ll also look at the heartwarming reactions children of color are having to the trailer of The Little Mermaid, starring Halle Bailey, a Black actress, as it’s a direct showcase of the importance of representation. Let’s dive into it!

More info: Twitter

Lizzo won an Emmy for her outstanding competition show “Watch Out For the Big Grrrls,” but it’s her acceptance speech that is making waves

Image credits: lizzobeeating

“When I was a little girl, all I wanted to see was me in the media. Someone fat like me. Black like me. Beautiful like me. If I could go back and tell little Lizzo something, I’d be like ‘You’re gonna see that person, but, b***h, it’s gonna have to be you!’”

Lizzo said this as part of her acceptance speech, bringing both her and many others to tears during her 2022 Emmys win. The star received the honor for outstanding competition show for “Watch Out For the Big Grrrls,” leading her down memory lane and back to her childhood when she wanted to see someone like her on TV.

“When I was a little girl, all I wanted to see was me in the media. Someone fat like me. Black like me. Beautiful like me,” she said, noting the importance of representation

Image credits: SpencerAlthouse

“Big girls come onstage right now—right now!” she encouraged. “I want to say thank you to the Emmys and the Emmy voters, first of all. I’m very emotional. The trophy is nice, but my emotion is for these people who are on the stage with me. The stories that they share. They’re not that unique, they just don’t get the platform. Telling stories, let’s just tell more stories.”

Her now award-winning show follows 13 women competing to be the next “BIG GRRRL” dancer for Lizzo’s 2022 tour. The search for the fellow dancer goes on in Hollywood, California. She proceeded to praise all the contestants, who were in the audience cheering, saying: “They’re Emmy award-winning superstars who are going on a World tour. Make some noise for my big girls. I love you guys so much. Daddy, I love you, oh my God. God bless y’all!”

Lizzo is now one step closer to the coveted EGOT—a compilation of Emmy, Grammy, Oscar and Tony awards. As of 2022, 17 people have accomplished this

Image credits: lizzobeeating

Lizzo is now one step closer to the coveted EGOT—a compilation of Emmy, Grammy, Oscar and Tony awards. Achieving the EGOT has been referred to as the “grand slam” of show business. As of 2022, 17 people have accomplished this feat, and it seems Lizzo may be number 18 very soon.

This opens up a very important and interesting discussion on the representation of minorities in pop culture and the media. Dr. Ninochka Mctaggart et al. found in 2019 that although Black girls and women made up 6.5% of the US population, only 3.7% of them are seen as leads/co-leads in the 100 top-grossing films of the last decade. This figure has improved in recent years.

Black women are often not represented or are misrepresented in pop culture, leading to Black women criticizing their natural features

Image credits: lizzo

Students of Black History at the University of San Diego note that, for a long time, the misrepresentation of Black women was a means for white people to feel superior, which led to clichéd interpretations such as the “angry Black woman.” It’s played an important role in bringing to life harmful and limiting stereotypes.

They argue that because white is the dominant, Black women are often not represented or are misrepresented, leading to Black women criticizing their natural features, thinking they are not beautiful because they are different from the ideals shown. This is important because the way they interpret Black women in their youth will impact their perception in the future and their own identity as a whole. This can also be applied to those outside of the coveted model body type.

The same can be said for overweight people. So should people be subjected to ridicule and misrepresentation solely based on their race, weight and body composition?

Image credits: Variety

The average American adult is overweight or obese, so the person at normal weight is actually in the minority; however, that is not what is seen in pop culture. Popular television shows that include people who are obese portray them either as comedic, lonely characters, or freaks, many promoting the idea that obesity is caused by individual failure rather than a mixture of individual, environmental, and genetic sources.

But even in the course of becoming more healthy, one still has to live within the body they inhabit. So should people be subjected to ridicule and misrepresentation solely based on their weight and body composition? Why do we base our own value on the competition of appearance?

“She looks like me!”: Reactions to The Little Mermaid live-action remake’s trailer is a good example as to the importance of positive representation

Image credits: Disney

Those are heavy questions to consider, but let’s look at a little bit of a silver lining in the form of The Little Mermaid live-action remake. Discussions broke out on the internet when Halle Bailey was announced to be playing Ariel, the main character. Many took issue in the casting of a Black actress for someone characterized as white with red hair.

Now that the trailer has been released and we can catch a first look at the film, many parents have been filming their youths’ reactions and, in my mind, it’s enough to quiet all haters and naysayers. The moment that young Black girls finally saw themselves represented as one of the all-time classic Disney princesses is one to notice.

Image credits: armlina

Parents filmed their young daughters rejoicing when they realized their beloved princess, played by Halle Bailey, was closer to them than ever before

Image credits: armlina

One video posted on TikTok, captioned “when your favorite Disney princess looks like you,” shows a little 3-year-old girl sitting up once she sees Ariel on screen. “I think she’s brown,” she says in the video, her face beaming. “Brown Ariel is cute.” In another, a girl screams excitedly while her mother films: “Mama, she’s Black!”

It brings hope that the divide built on appearances alone will soon fall short and that we’ll be able to accept and celebrate one another fully

Image credits: armlina

There’s still a long way to go for all of us to be represented fully, but knowing that little girls now have more role models to look up to and help build their own dreams on is exciting. It brings hope that the divide built on appearances alone will soon fall short and that we’ll be able to accept and celebrate one another fully.

You can watch Lizzo’s full speech here

Polly Irungu, founder of Black Women Photographers, hopes “that as I and many others continue to do this work that we are not distracted by racism. That we can just simply be photographers without having to fight for visibility, access, support, and paid opportunities. Until then, the work continues.”

Many people have celebrated Lizzo’s message and agreed with its importance. Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!

//platform.twitter.com/widgets.jshttps://connect.facebook.net/–!–/sdk.jshttps://platform.instagram.com/en_US/embeds.js

Originally published at www.boredpanda.com

Subscribe
Notify of
guest

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

0 Comments
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

Recent Articles