The Consent Workshop Slut-Shaming: Fast Black girls
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The term ‘fast’ denotes a girl who has matured sexually beyond her years. While we’re not too sure how one could mature sexually beyond one’s age, we are certain that it is a term used to justify the slut-shaming and sexual assault of black girls in society. While discussing slut shaming it is important to recognize the intersections within this discussion and the difference in experience within racialized groups.

It seems a bit redundant that slut-shaming still has to be explained to the larger public, that no one woman is better than the other for the choices she makes in terms of sexual activities or appearance. For reference, however Slut-shaming, in the words of Soraya Chemaly, is embarrassing, insulting or otherwise denigrating a girl or woman for her real or extrapolated sexual behaviour, including for dressing sexually, having sexual feelings and/or exploring and exhibiting them.

To be a fast black girl is to be a black/African teenager going through puberty like other girls in other races. It is to develop body features common in black women, it is to be sexualized by everyone, long before sexual thoughts of any kind begin to form in your mind. It is to be seen as the sluttier counterpart to ‘innocent’ white girls

We think it is important to discuss the adult-ification of young black girls, where society feels like they are more mature than others, hence why in situations of abuse, we question a teenager’s motive for wearing shorts and walking about like every normal person. This leads to less protection for black girls, opening them up to predators and their eventual slut-shaming and victim-blaming in cases of rape.

In Nigeria, there have been countless stories of children having sexual predatory encounters. Most adult Nigerian women remember their first boyfriends or dates being with significantly older men. The ridiculous thing about all this is the seeming argument that these children consent to these encounters, while we forget about things like grooming and the lawful age of consent.

With stories like these, the common consensus would be looking into what the child might have been looking for when she found herself in situations like these or why her parents let her fall into the hands of her attackers, never why a rapist who has probably raped before and will do so again is allowed to continue doing so. It’s never why the law never protects black and African women.


Slut-shaming is embarrassing women and girls for expressing themselves sexually. It puts women down for expressing their sexuality and shames them into thinking acknowledging and acting on it is wrong or unnatural. It is the intentional act of calling a woman a slut or a whore with intent to humiliate her for the same sexual norms exhibited by men

With roots in purity culture, the weaponization of the women bodies begins from a young age, women are made to understand how important sex is to men and how it is in their nature to desire it, we are taught that our value is closely tied to our sexuality and how well we can preserve it, not to provoke these desires in men by not wearing certain things, not being alone in a room with them, and that the only time it is acceptable for women to have sex with men is when they’ve paid for it with a ring. The way gender is socially constructed works to define the ways men and women are treated by society, where women are slut-shamed, men are hyper-sexualized.

Slut-shaming is used as a weapon to blame women for being victims and survivors of rape or sexual assault/ harassment of any form. It uses shame as a tactic to humiliate, blame and control women. “What were you wearing”, “ were you drunk”, “ why were you out that late” are all tropes used to justify and enable the system of patriarchy while shaming women into believing what happened to them is somehow their fault.

It is important to keep in mind that words like slut are intended to maintain the system of oppression created by patriarchy, a woman is not a slut because society cannot handle her sexual freedom.

By: Ayotunde Balure

She is a web specialist at The Consent Workshop and also a school representative. Ayotunde is a writer and hopes one day to write and direct movies. She decided to volunteer at TCW because she wants to actively participate in creating a positive culture of sexual consent, combat rape culture and help support survivors of sexual assault

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