Serena Williams discusses how her ‘thick’ body was not ‘celebrated’ and ‘representing beautiful dark women’
In a frank interview, Serena Williams admits during the early years of her career she felt her body was not “celebrated” while she was also “underpaid and “undervalued” because of the colour of skin.
The 23-time Grand Slam winner, who describes her own body as “thick”, says her sister Venus Williams’ “tall and thin” frame was viewed in a more positive light for most of her career.
In an interview with British Vogue, she said: “When I was growing up, what was celebrated was different. Venus looked more like what is really acceptable: she has incredibly long legs, she’s really, really thin.
“I didn’t see people on TV that looked like me, who were thick. There wasn’t positive body image. It was a different age.”
She added: “How amazing that my body has been able to give me the career that I’ve had, and I’m really thankful for it. I only wish I had been thankful sooner.”
The 39-year-old also discussed the Black Lives Matter movement and female empowerment with the fashion magazine.
The Williams sisters, who have been credited for revolutionizing women’s tennis and bringing equality to tennis, have also inspired a new generation of black players.
Serena, though, admits she was not always valued because of the colour of her skin.
“Underpaid, undervalued,” she said. “I’ve never been a person that has been like, ‘I want to be a different colour’ or ‘I want my skin tone to be lighter’.
“I like who I am, I like how I look, and I love representing the beautiful dark women out there. For me, it’s perfect. I wouldn’t want it any other way.”
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