Black Women are Battling Two Pandemics, Femicide Being One of Them

Arah Iloabugichukwu
12 min readNov 11, 2021

Are Black women in partnership with men who delight in their oppression? It sure seems that way.

A protest to end Black femicide

According to Black Femicide-US, an organization that tracks homicide and violence towards Black women and girls in the United States, every 6 hours in this country, a black woman or girl is killed. As of November 5th, 2021, the number of deaths to date was 1,237. To offer context, as of the same date, 111 Black men and women had been killed by police in this country. Femicide, as a practice, is nothing new. In April 2020, the United Nations called for urgent action to “end femicide and violence against women”. The same year, Liberia declared rape a national emergency; Nigeria’s governors called for action in combatting gender-based violence; and over 10,000 rape cases were recorded in South Africa’s second quarter alone. Five Latin American countries topped last year’s list of most recorded femicides by population percentage, with El Salvador and Honduras leading the list. Since the dawn of written history, where societies have implemented systems of male supremacy, women and children have suffered the malice of male oppression. Modern-day dynamics mirror this phenomenon, not just in the United States, but literally, all around the world.

Femicide, or the intentional and targeted killing of women and girls because they are female, is one of the leading causes of death for Black women and girls globally. Yes, you read that right. The only thing more disturbing than the international collective of Black women sharing in this statistic is the statistic that fingers a familiar culprit, Black men. With a direct correlation found between domestic violence and the prevalence of female homicides, another category Black women lead-in, it’s no wonder that many feel backed against unbeatable odds. And to make matters worse, little, if anything, has been done to address the issue; some going as far as to deny its existence. However, Black women’s lived experiences paint a different portrait, as the imperfect union of skin color and sex creates an immeasurable objection to their wellbeing, we call this misogynoir, a word that describes the ways racist and sexist representations shape public opinions about Black women. Depictions of us as hypersexual, aggressive, unattractive, and masculine mixed with the…

Arah Iloabugichukwu

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