The concept of beauty is descirbed in Darwin's Descent of Man
With respect to colour, the negroes rallied Mungo Park on the whiteness of his skin and the prominence of his nose, both of which they considered as "unsightly and unnatural conformations."
The African Moors, also, "knitted their brows and seemed to shudder" at the whiteness of his skin.
On the eastern coast, the negro boys when they saw Burton, cried out, "Look at the white man; does he not look like a white ape?"
On the western coast, as Mr. Winwood Reade informs me, the negroes admire a very black skin more than one of a lighter tint. But their horror of whiteness may be attributed, according to this same traveller, partly to the belief held by most negroes that demons and spirits are white, and partly to their thinking it a sign of ill-health.
With the Kaffirs, who differ much from negroes, "the skin, except among the tribes near Delagoa Bay, is not usually black, the prevailing colour being a mixture of black and red, the most common shade being chocolate. Dark complexions, as being most common, are naturally held in the highest esteem. To be told that he is light-coloured, or like a white man, would be deemed a very poor compliment by a Kaffir. I have heard of one unfortunate man who was so very fair that no girl would marry him." One of the titles of the Zulu king is, "You who are black."
If you found this post useful, then consider subscribing to my blog by email: