Hattie Anderson is a Confident Black Goddess

Hattie is a 7th grader from Minneapolis, Minnesota. She loves running track and is currently researching what kind of college degree she wants to earn.

In her own words:

I first realized I was a feminist when I saw females getting treated differently just because they are female.

What is your family like?
Nice and unique.

How has the culture you’re raised in informed your ideas about what a woman is supposed to be — how she should look, act, and speak?
She can look, act, talk, and dress any type of way.

What are three words a new acquaintance might use to describe you?
Unique, confident, and self-assertive.

What are three words you would use to describe yourself?
Self-assertive, fast, and chill.

What aspect of your identity gives you the most strength?
My skin color. Without my melanin I wouldn’t be the same, and I don’t think I would be as confident.

How do you most enjoy expressing your ideas and identity?
Music:)

What gets you out of bed in the morning on the worst of days?
My Bryson Tiller playlist!

How did the all the upheaval of the pandemic and everything else in 2020 affect the things you love to do?
I learned that I can adjust to things in a different way.

What or who in your life history most shaped your values?
MLK, all the things that happened back in the day to Black folks, and the Black Lives Matter protests. It shaped my values because I noticed how important I am for people to protest every day for me and my people’s right.

How does your community share your values?
BLM signs in their yard; and whether they’re a person of color or not, they care.

What fears hold you back?
I don’t really have fears, maybe dying. But we all fear that, I guess.

What fears did you overcome this past year?
None. I’m not a person who gets afraid of things.

Tell us about a time when you felt silenced.
I was in ELA class and me and my friend were drawing for a project.We decided to color our skin pitch-black instead of brown to show that we are proud to be BLACK.

My white teacher took it the wrong way and told us we weren’t black. Luckily me and my best friend are confident Black people, so we didn’t listen to her…but deep down we felt silenced, because it felt like she didn’t care.

Who is a woman whose voice you really respect?
My mom’s and Tiana Bartoletta (she’s an Olympian).

How do you want to use your voice in the future?
I want to use it as a strong Black woman speaking nothing but facts 100%.

Headline History

The titles for the VOICES Series come from Exercise #2 in the Permission to Speak Workbook. The exercise, “You have more power than you know,” encourages participants to choose a title from a list that is offered, or — if none of those titles feels right — to make up one of their own.

Each woman interviewed for the VOICES Series either chose a title for herself from this list, or gave herself a title of her own making based on the prompt, “When I hold my power, I am a …”

Reader. Writer. Hangnail biter. @wordsbyladonna

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