Amara La Negra – Selling Sex as a Dark Skin Black Woman

By OckyDub | Posted Jan 5 2018 | 10 Comments  

The world has been (re)introduced to the beauty that is Amara La Negra by way of the reality series Love and Hip Hop Miami. I can easily envision La Negra being the next rag to riches story that folk “sop up with biscuits” like Cardi B. Just as with Cardi B, La Negra can appeal to both english and spanish speaking audiences.

La Negra is a proud Afro-Latina of Dominican descent and the show partly follows her attempt to break into the American mainstream. Controversy arose following the new installment of the reality series; as viewers watched music producer Elijah “Young Hollywood” Sarraga attempt to explain how La Negra’s ‘look’ and glorious afro (how can you not love her afro?) may stall her progress or career. He then proceeds to make one problematic statement after another.

Since the premier and controversy, new found fans of La Negra celebrated as she signed a multi-album deal with Fast Life Entertainment Worldwide and BMG.

I’d never heard of La Negra before but due to the dust up, I searched online for her music to asses her talents. From what I gathered, her music is mostly dance music, which is cool. I think the majority of dance tracks that are hits in the mainstream are not due to the singer having strong vocal skills but due the production and extremely catchy repetitive hooks. Based on this, La Negra can absolutely make it and cross over into mainstream status.

After watching her official music video from 2013 in conjunction with doing an image search of her online, I was a bit conflicted.

In society and in media, darker skin women are absolutely seen as less attractive than lighter skin women. This is due to lighter or fairer complexions being considered more desirable by many; which is routed in white supremacy and European beauty standards. Black bodies are not only desired but subsequently ridiculed. For this reason, it’s refreshing to hear and see a darker skin woman of Latin descent being proud of her dark skin and professing it on national television….major props. This is happening at a time when more and more Latinos are self-identifying as White.

Nonetheless it didn’t qualm my sense of disappointment.

Looking at her countless public images, it seems that the biggest talent she has to offer is her body. Her videos and performances were mostly of her shaking her ass and pussy poppin. Many of the images were semi-nude or overtly sexual in nature. 


In the last couple of decades since rap music became a dominating force sweeping the globe; we’ve been told that sexual objectification of women (specifically Black women) within lyrics and music videos, is not only problematic and stereotypical but also dangerous.  

On the other hand, when women sexually objectify and put themselves on display, in the same fashion as what’s being condemned in rap videos; it’s considered Amber Rose style-sexual empowerment-feminism. Looking at the below videos (within the prism of today’s climate), it was hard for me to imagine them not being considered sexist or misogynistic and that La Negra wasn’t submitting to patriarchy. 

In the below video she plays an adulterous maid…yep, the hired help. Nope…no racial stereotypes to see here.

Woke Black women, Black Feminists, Black Queer Feminist, all Feminists…yall good with this?

…And what about this?


Notice the young Black girls in the back ground. What message do you think they’re receiving? How is this not what Black women and feminists have been speaking out against for years now?

I feel like because Sarraga attacked her appearance and she’s defending “Black Girl Magic Dark-Skin Blacknes”, people want her to win regardless if she has no real talent outside of being beautiful, voluptuous and a twerk master. The message I’m receiving from La Negra is, “Hey America; I’m pretty, I’m sexy, I love my dark skin and Latino heritage…NOW MAKE ME FAMOUS.”

Is there not a middle ground to celebrate Blackness, darker complexions, our natural hair and our sex appeal without giving up pounds of flesh in the process? South American / Latino / Caribbean culture on many levels is overtly sexual and celebrates the human body. One only has to witness Carnivals of the region (especially Brazil’s) to observe this point. However we’re talking about the palette of the American audience which is a bit more conservative.

I’m definitely not some conservative prude and I understand sex sells, but do we have to be so cheap?






About the Author

Octavius is a founder and editor of Cypher Avenue. He's here to help speak for us and show the world that masculine gay / bisexual men of color are not a part of the stereotypical gay normal that is seen and fed to the masses. No...we are a distinct breed, filled with character and pride. Cypher Avenue is here to show the world how we are different.

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10 Comments Feel Free To Join The Cypher.

  1. African King
    African King | January 5th, 2018

    The writer of this article is entitled to their opinion. The way I see it, there were women of all shades from the most pale white women to the darkest sun-kissed black women that make "selling sex" a part of their business.

    I wish her the best with her new contract. She has backing by a major label but the multi-album deal can be a trap. I think it is always best for artists to avoid contracts with a number of albums or years attached to them. Try to sign contracts that specify a monetary amount as opposed to a number of albums or years. That's what Cardi B and Remy Ma (both from LHH NY series) did and they're winning!

  2. acessential
    acessential | January 5th, 2018

    I'm willing to support her for the simple fact that, "I'm rooting for everybody black." She's already popular in the Latin American circuit, so she's just trying to cross over.

    I'm not an expert in feminist theory, but I think the difference between objectification and empowerment has a lot to do with who the primary beneficiary of it is and who has control. If she wants to use her sexuality and her body to her advantage, that's completely her business. I think it would be a problem if everyone around her was forcing her to act and behave a certain way even though deep down, that's not necessarily what she wants. But if she has no qualms at all, has total control over her image and her body, and isn't being forced to do anything she doesn't want to do, I say, go black girl!

    • Julia | April 2nd, 2018

      I do not think this is at all harmless. On feminist theory: mainstream feminism – i.e. 3rd wave liberal feminism – does believe this as they believe that if something is a choice, it is automatically empowering. As a classic feminist (in my 30s, FYI) I call bull. We do not live in social vacuums. Regardless of whether or not she is in control of her image, she is upholding a sexuality that is very specific to Western patriarchal sexual expectations of women. It is of a specific design meant to reduce women’s sexuality to body parts, and not the whole woman. It is not a natural sexuality. And it makes no sense that when males use such images, it is sexist and upholds patriarchy, but when a woman uses the same images – what, women’s bodies are suddenly not objectified? How is this not giving men a full green light to further objectify women? I respect her for what she is doing for Afro-Latinas, but she is doing nothing for women’s sexuality when she is just copying images specifically designed to degrade women’s sexuality. Of course, liberal feminists would immediately accuse me of “slut-shaming” or being a prude, but I am not criticizing female sexuality or women who celebrate their sexuality. I am criticizing a very specific type of sexuality that has roots in misogyny, along with the idea that women can copy men’s degrading images of women and not uphold the patriarchy. Healthy sexuality between men and women can only occur when neither party is objectifying the other – like in one video where she waves her butt in the face of a man while he spanks her. If this video were made by a male, there would be an uproar (and there have been uproars, rightfully so), but because it is made by a female it somehow conveys a different meaning. Except it doesn’t.

  3. OckyDub
    OckyDub | January 5th, 2018

    I think that goes with saying but okay.

    This reminds me of how when people critique the Trump administration and the response is what about Hillary Clinton or Obama.

    This is "whataboutism" or "well white people do it too".

    Nonetheless; isn't wanting a media darling to 'win' because we like them blinding the observer from being objective of their faults? Or is practicing / displaying misogyny, sexism and patriarchy negative only when a male is the perpetrator?

  4. OckyDub
    OckyDub | January 5th, 2018

    So this means you also support Umar Johnson, Omarosa, Ben Carson and Sheriff David Clark because they are also Black?

    From your observation who is the beneficiary here? Could you see Beyonce, Oprah, or Cardi B doing this? Would you be okay with your daughter, niece, girl cousins doing this? Or is it only "rachet" or ghetto when its someone we're basis against?

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  5. takeyourmeds91
    takeyourmeds91 | January 5th, 2018

    I didn't know she liked to spread her pussy like that but in general, I like her lol

  6. RolandG
    RolandG | January 6th, 2018

    I definitely don’t want to see Oprah doing this. I’m sorta torn on this. I get it that there are lots of people who see this as pure sexual gratification and an embarrassment to black women in general. I also appreciate the fact that we live in a world were people are free to be objectified in such a manner and not be put to death. I don’t believe that we have to always think of what the little black girls are thinking in the back of the video. Honestly, where are their parents and why are they even being permitted to be in such a video in the first place? That is not La Negra’s fault in the least.

  7. African King
    African King | January 6th, 2018

    LOL you shady.

    I just agree along with some of the points made by @acessential earlier.

    I'm not the best debater BUT I'm cheering for Amara La Negra. She will be a huge crossover success. Episode 1 of LHHMIA was a catalyst in her acquiring a record deal with a major. That's huge! There is a whole season of the series remaining and her star will only rise up!

  8. acessential
    acessential | January 6th, 2018

    I said I'm "willing" to support her. Unless she proves otherwise. Ben Carson, Umar Johnson, and all of them other folks have proven themselves to be people I'm not willing to support.

    If she has total control of her image, total control of her body, and total control of herself as a business, I don't care what she does.

    Your hypothetical scenarios about by daughter, niece, etc are straw man arguments. I'm not going to entertain logical fallacies.

  9. itsumoconfused
    itsumoconfused | January 7th, 2018

    I think it would be better to hear from Latinx persons as her story is more tied tbh to the discourse of race within the context of the Latinx community and the embracing of African heritage which something that is now becoming more of a way that persons use to describe themselves. often times growing up there was a very large divide between the blacks, puerto ricans and dominicans, but nowadays many of my peers–college educated PR & DR men and women point out their blackness in ways that weren't evident before. As well, I'm seeing it more even from persons that aren't necessarily in college and even more so the new gen of kiddos are starting to self-identify as black or are very tied to the overall black experience.

    Now I do believe her experience is tied to an empowering one, perhaps we might not agree with all the sex tied to her lyrics/movements/etc; but she is giving a face to a very specific target of persons within the Latinx community. Ideally, we would prefer someone closer to a Celia Cruz… but hey this is what we got, so we gotta rep and hopefully can get more diverse voices front and center in regards to the musicality that comes with Afro-Latinx persons.

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