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English School Based Assessment - My Dark Skin Is Beautiful

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English School-Based Assessment (S.B.A)

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NAME OF CENTRE:  Pentab Extension High School

NAME OF CANDIDATE: Jacqueline Williamson





INDIVIDUAL TOPIC: My Dark Skin Is Beautiful

Table of Contents

Plan of Investigation        3

Reflection 1        4-5

Reflection 2        6-7

Reflection 3        8-9

Plan of Oral Presentation        10

Written Report        11-12

Appendix        13-15

References        16

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Plan of Investigation

My group members and I have chosen the theme beauty.  I will be focusing on:  My dark skin is beautiful.  I have chosen this topic because I have observed that many young men and women in the society today are changing their physical appearance for various reasons through means of cosmetic creams and invasive procedures such as skin bleaching and laser treatments.  I would like to find out more about dark skin persons who somewhat had struggles being black, did not change their appearance and now come to embrace their true identity.  In choosing this topic also serves to motivate individuals that their dark skin is beautiful despite what the world (including the entertainment and fashion industry) is promoting beauty to be through the latest fashion and bleaching cream.

In conducting this research I expect to develop my writing skills and reading comprehension.  Also, as a student of English, I will seek to improve my knowledge and build my vocabulary with the words and terms that I will come across as I search for the most appropriate artifacts.  

I intend to gather information for my topic by searching a variety of sources.  I will select three pieces of material that correspond with my topic after browsing the internet for articles, poems, pictures and YouTube videos.  I intend to use an online article, a poem and a YouTube video that reinforces dark skin and beauty.  Through these pieces I will analyse the writer’s particular language technique, devices and how these help to achieve the purpose of the theme.  In order to accomplish this task I will also meet with the group to discuss materials, share information, plan and present an oral presentation.


Beauty according to the Chambers 20th Century Dictionary is a characteristic of a person, animal. Place, object, or idea that provides a perceptual experience of pleasure or satisfaction.

In the article entitled ‘The Day I Learnt To Accept That My Dark Skin Was Beautiful’ by Nicole Dennis-Benn, I have learnt that in the days gone by, the word beautiful was not used to describe a dark-skin girl.  Instead words such as ‘you black and ugly’ or ‘nothing black is not good’ was used.  The word beautiful was used when a white or Chinese person modeling on the Miss Universe stage.  I have also learnt that the writer grew up ashamed of her dark skin because people of the same race would treat their own with citing racial hatred.   In my view I think that the legacy of slavery have left a great impact whereby the white slave owners were placed at the top of the social ladder followed by the lighter skin who were given work in the house for the purpose of being playmates for the masters.  

After reading the poem, ‘Lord, Why did you make me black?’ by RuNett Nia Ebo, I have learnt that most black people are uncomfortable in their skin and would each day perplexed God as to why their colour was that of black.  I have also learnt that dark persons were only not perturb by the colour of their skin, but several other aspects of their bodies to include thick lips, broad nose, hips and cheeks, brown eyes and kinky hair.  The writer posited that “Lord, don’t you think it’s time for you to make a change?  Why don’t you re-do creation and make everyone the same?”

Reflection 2

Language is defined as …(Oxford Dictionary n.d.) There are language techniques present in the artefacts examined which are considered to be effective.

In the poem, ‘Poverty, Poverty’’ by German Girl, emotive words were used. These phrases are meant to evoke an emotional response to the subject. The writer uses emotive language to force the reader to feel sympathetic towards the victim and critical of the oppressor. Describing the victims as ‘suffering’ allows the reader to sympathize with them as they do not deserve to be suffering.The fact that persons were said to be ‘frowned upon’ allows the reader to become angry at the perpetrator and disapprove of such ill behaviour.The act of making persons angry about the challenges summoned by poverty makes persons more inclined to assist persons that are poverty-stricken.

In the video interview, “United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) People of Poverty”, the use of Jamaican Creole was evident. This can suggest that the persons are extremely tired of their situation. They are yearning for a positive change in their economic status. The strong use of Jamaican Creole with the absence of any English can also suggest that the interviewees are uneducated or undereducated. They are unemployed to attend school on a regular basis due to the fact that they cannot finance an education and has resulted in their speeches being broken and unintelligent.

In the article, ‘The Evil Effects of Poverty’ by Raging Bull, statistics were used. The practice or science of collecting and analyzing numerical data in large quantities, especially for the purpose of inferring proportions in a whole from those in a representative sample (Oxford Dictionary n.d.). Statistics are used to support claims. As such, the readers will feel as though they cannot argue with what was stated because statistics add factual weight to information provided in the article. The writer also used simile, ‘Poverty is like an evil monster’. This helps to spark the readers’ imagination while getting the information across. It also makes the writing and reading more interesting and lyrical.

Reflection 3

I have been greatly inspired to become aware of the many Effects of poverty based on the fact that I have and currently am witnessing the many effects that poverty has on a person’s life. The investigation has been greatly useful to many persons including myself. It has also shaped my thinking on poverty and life itself.

The fact that persons are being deprived each day has inspired me to appreciate what I have. I am now grateful for even the basic things in life. I am now more willing to share what I have attained with others and the feeling of wanting to help others is now stronger than before because I understand that many persons are in unfortunate situations they did not choose.



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