Traveling Internationally While Black

Doing anything in America-While-Black is usually worthy of a hashtag. I didn't know it would also be hashtag-worthy if you were traveling abroad. Apparently so! And disappointedly so in this era of global society and reach.

Chilling in Cuba.

Travel writer and vlogger Joanna Franco writes about the experience of exploring the globe as a woman of color, aka WOC, and how it makes her see herself in the world. Often, very alone because she doesn't see many women like herself, a WOC, traveling not as a refugee or survivalist, but for love of travel and for professional reasons.

But more importantly, she sees herself as an influencer on others both those back home who read her articles, and on those abroad who meet her and learn what a black woman from America is really all about. Stereotypes, and gross distortions have spread across the globe (worse than the old UglyAmerican standby), and even she has been horrified at what some people have perceived to be the majority of her culture here at home. Even worse, ever tactless, they've shared those opinions and misperceptions with her...and said them to her face. Nice to hear some countries didn't know our Black American women are beautiful. WTF, really?

She sees an opportunity to be a role model, and break ground for the next wave of young women who will venture forth...and be globalexplorers just like her. Join her on her adventures through the Matador Network.

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