Wordless Wednesday

Word(less words) Wednesday: Yes, an albino woman can indeed bond with her Black baby!

“The bond between mother and child is absolute in this tender moment when breastfeeding. Nothing else is relevant, neither skin color, nor the fact that the mother is albino and her baby is black.”

Given the context of this ‘Photo of the Day’ I found online with the caption above, from a project that looks at the lived experiences and violence perpetuated against those with albinism, I can almost understand why the photographer has highlighted this scene as an area of interest. But I would rather speak up about the dehumanization that arises from objectifying a woman who is simply feeding a baby that came from her own body.

8 thoughts on “Word(less words) Wednesday: Yes, an albino woman can indeed bond with her Black baby!

  1. How bizarre.  The caption, I mean.  Why on earth would someone think it was in any way notable that a woman should bond with her baby?  This is someone who is trying to highlight negative experiences of Albino people?  All I see is an African woman nursing her African baby.  Why would her being an Albino African make a difference?  Talk about being hung up on colour!  Is it also remarkable when a white mother nurses and bonds with her mixed-race child?  I can only hope that the person who wrote that caption was a very young student who will learn to think before she writes in the future.

    1. Hi Kimberly! I completely agree with you. I really like Lageeknikita’s comment — there is no difference here, I believe. Now we can open up/continue the conversation around the complexity of race issues, because it is obviously is one that need to be at the forefront and remain there. I hope this student/photographer joins in on these.

  2. My daughter is biracial ) her father is white and I’m black) and when she was a baby she looked like me and had her fathers coloring . Even though she looked just like me people would always ask of she was mine or if I happened to be nursing her, her wet nurse. Funny how people also make color the issue.

  3. A Black mother being called a wet nurse for nursing her Black and white child is asinine! But I wish I were surprised. What Lageeknikita is talking about is somewhat along the lines of what I’m alluding to here. This really struck me as the form of ‘Othering’ that shows exactly how ‘innocent’ remarks reveal the much deeper side of whiteness, privilege, insularity, and racial issues. 

    This woman is just feeding a baby that came from her body, yet because of the two contrasting differences in her skin color, they are both turned into objects of scrutiny.  That’s what I got from this, but if anyone has a different interpretation I’m open to hearing it.

  4. As a  mother who has breastfed a baby to whom I gave birth and a baby whom I adopted, and as an IBCLC who has helped many adoptive mothers breastfeed their domestically and internationally adopted children, this caption makes no sense to me except in the context of racism. In reality, love is love. To breastfeed an adoptive child who looks or doesn’t look like you is simply to mother your child. To breastfeed a child to whom you gave birth and who looks or doesn’t look like you is simply to mother your child.

  5. Well, this also brings to my mind, what is race?  What is pigment?  Are the baby and the mama not the same race?  Is the mama not Black since she has albinism? 

    1. Oh, she’s absolutely still Black, Inga. I get this *strange* feeling that had this been a different situation — a white woman for example, then this would be about how brave she is and of her heroic acts. Or, at least the conversation would be much different, I’m so sure! Not the same display. 

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