Why Rejection of Natural Hair Shouldn’t Be a Family Tradition

In many families with African bloodlines, rejection of natural hair is passed down from generation to generation. Mothers teach their daughters to “fix their hair,” and daughters learn to fear for their own children’s hair.

Elizabeth Acevedo has had it with this family tradition. Watch her embrace the possibility of having daughters with natural hair in this poem.

Elizabeth Acevedo is the daughter of Dominican immigrants, proudly born and raised in the heart of New York City. She holds a BA in Performing Arts from The George Washington University and is currently an MFA candidate at the University of Maryland. Acevedo has been published or has poems forthcoming in The Acentos Review, The Ostrich Review, Callaloo, Poet Lore, and The Notre Dame Review. She has been a featured performer on BET and Mun2, as well as delivered a TEDx Talk that aired in March 2013. Acevedo was the 2014 Women of the World Poetry Slam representative for Washington DC, 2014 Beltway Grand Slam Champion, and as of August, a National Poetry Slam Champion. She lives in Washington, D.C.. Follow her on Twitter, or visit her website for more updates on her work.