Opinion: A Woman's Hair

"Does not the very nature of things teach you that if a man has long hair, it is a disgrace to him, but if a woman has long hair, it is her glory? For long hair is given to her as covering"
1 Corinthians 11: 14-15. NIV.

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Is it proven that Jesus had long hair? I will take time to research into this matter on a day when I actually find myself caring about the length of hair on anybody's head.  Growing up, we all got haircuts. Both boys and girls. The "nature" of our hair is such that it cannot grow long without intense care and nobody had time for that. Not even my mother who is very much into the long hair deceit. The hair of a significant amount of people of African origin do not seem to understand that it ought to grow downwards, straighter, and smoother.  This type of hair is not considered beautiful because it is often very thick, coarse, kinky, and needs a great deal of help to lengthen. In Ghana, as was and still is the case for several West African countries, when a girl becomes of age, she grows her hair and gets it braided to keep it long. It is very likely that this was done prior to colonial days. What is done differently these days is that, after the hair is allowed some growth with the aid of braids, it is then chemically treated to make it straighter, softer, and smoother.

If I never comb my hair, it will  grow into itself, forming tighter coils and growing more upwards rather than downwards. Without any special attention, it would become difficult for my hair to grow in any form that can be interpreted as a covering for my face, but would become a literal covering for my head. Try running a finger through hair as such.

Since the Bible has a big influence on our society, it is no wonder that my mother almost had a heart attack when she came home one day to find me with a very bare and shiny head. My glory had been shorn off! It is no wonder that certain men think it despicable when a woman's hair is short. It is no wonder several women aim to have perfect bouncy long hair. For that is what we have been made to believe is beautiful. Hair, something so very common to human beings, animals, and even certain plants, has been been given such ridiculous elevation in our society. But, of course, not just any hair is cool! On the woman, it is only best if it is on the head. Several cultures maintain that the woman's body must remain hairless, even though nature speaks a different language.

Hence, hair is one of the things that we do so much to control. My epilator witnesses this enthusiastically as I grit my teeth to shun the pain it generates.  What I am trying to say here is that a woman is not reduced to her hair. A woman is still female without hair, as a man is still male with his. A woman is still a woman if she chooses to go bald, wear trousers, not paint her nails or her face and wherever it is that the "girly" paints these days.That which is feminine is is not only a matter of body parts but also a matter of feeling. Therefore, it really should not matter whether or not a woman chooses to shave her head and not shave her legs.  Every part of the human body is glorious and it is not specific to one type of human body, nature of hair, but to all.
-
Jane

Comments

  1. When I saw your title I was thinking of another issue that Black women particularly in America face but you totally didn't touch on that which is awesome. You kept it simple..or I guess sort of simple.

    So, in America if you don't already know there is this huge issue between good hair and bad hair. This is specific to Black/African American women. (I don't like to use the term African American but that's another topic). Anyway, I guess because I'm biracial I have good hair? Which is strange that it occurred this way. It's completely random that I happen to have 'good' hair. My brother and my cousin who are both puerto rican and black have 'traditional black' people hair.

    Anyway, I really hate that in America that hair is an actual topic. People have all types of hair in Africa and it really shouldn't matter what's considered good hair. More importantly, all women regardless of color have self-esteem issues with their hair so we all should just be more understanding about it than hateful.

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    1. Ayla, thank you so much for reading and leaving such a great comment. I was going to write about the issue of bad hair and good hair since I had just encountered it over the weekend. Three women, who mean very well and because they are family and family friends, trashed talked my hair to the extent that I almost cried. In their opinion it ought to be straightened, it ought to look like a 'young woman's hair', and if I insist on remaining natural, I should at least wear weaves or braids, they told me. I was furious. I told them, as respectfully as I could, that I love my hair just the way it is and I am not interested in wearing weaves or straightening it.

      It is in ignorance that certain groups of people, including Africans consider the nature of African hair as not "good hair." I think it is great hair. I am very excited about the nature of my hair. It blows my mind in all that it can do: puff and shrink in such interesting ways. It is so alive and so moody. I love the coarse texture, I love how hard it can get, and so soft sometimes it is a wonder that it is still the same hair. I decided to not write about hair in the category of good and bad but rather male and female, and on one particular source of the stereotype on hair because you are very right and I absolutely agree with you that; "all women regardless of color have self-esteem issues with their hair so we all should be more understanding about it than hateful."

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    2. Love the conversation that is happening here Eyelah and Jane!

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  2. Great post Jane! I loved...
    "But, of course, not just any hair is cool! On the woman, it is only best if it is on the head, several cultures maintain that the woman's body must remain hairless, even though nature speaks a different language."
    So true. I feel like I have a laundry list of the places I've gotta shave in the shower, but somehow the hair on my head isn't an issue. Odd!

    I most loved this...
    "Every part of the human body is glorious and it is not specific to one type of human body, or race of people but to all."
    So true! Thank you for pointing that out!

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    Replies
    1. Thank you for reading, Olivia :)
      I am happy you were able to grasp the point that I was trying to make.

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Very cool of you to read my post(s). Please leave your thoughts with me, I would love to read them. Thank you!
-
Jane

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