I was surprised to find that there were quite a few women who took issue with the title of BET’s “Black Girls Rock” program. I know, I know feminism has affected us. (And there’s nothing wrong with that.) Technically and biologically we are women and deserve to be recognized as such; but for many black women, girl is a term of endearment, one of the milder ones in the black community. I know that personally I address close associates, friends and family (of any race) by this moniker. When my grandmother was still living she got a real kick out of the fact that when one of our late night conversations got good to me, I’d call her girl too. It’s my word…our word. Yes, we’re grown. Yes, we’re women but when it gets real, when we get comfortable, you can be a woman and a girl all at the same time.
Even if you don’t use this phrase, surely after hanging out with us here at Madame Noire, you know what it means. The phrase “girl, stop” expresses distaste for action or idea. Here we like to use it when referring to celebrities who’ve gone too far– or not far enough– with their fashion choices. I like to use this one when one of my friends is talking out the side of her neck. Typically this one is used in a playful matter.