O, the Oprah Magazine is taking on race and racial stereotypes in its May 2017 issue.
Photographer Chris Buck made his point simply and distinctly in a photo essay called “Let’s Talk About Race,” in which he took stereotypical representations of white women and women of color and flipped them.
One picture shows Asian women chatting and laughing while white women give them pedicures. Another shows a little white girl standing in a toy store aisle looking at rows and rows of only black dolls. Another shows a Latina woman holding a little dog while on the phone as she doesn’t acknowledge the presence of a white maid pouring her a cup of tea.
“When you see an image of someone from a different background, what is your expectation of them?” Buck asked in a phone interview explaining his thought process behind the photo essay. “When you see an image from someone [of a different race], what is your expectation of them and are we challenging it? Why do we expect a certain thing from someone of a [certain race] and expect them to be serving another [race]?”
Lucy Kaylin, editor-in-chief at O, said that the concept for the feature came from Oprah herself d
uring a meeting.
“It was a topic on all of our minds and [Winfrey] was eager for us to tackle it,” Kaylin said. “The main thing we wanted to do was deal with the elephant in the room — that race is a thorny issue in our culture, and tensions are on the rise. So let’s do our part to get an honest, compassionate conversation going, in which people feel heard and we all learn something — especially how we can all do better and move forward.”
Already, the pictures are causing quite the stir, and we’d encourage you to take a look for yourself. Each image really does speak a thousand words.