When Rachel Dolezal first made headlines this summer, after the N.A.A.C.P. chapter president was “outed” for being white, no one seemed quite sure what to make of Dolezal’s curious narrative. After all, the media hadn’t exactly ever encountered a Caucasian woman who so identified with African-American culture that she devoted her career to celebrating it and countless hours into presenting herself as black. But when Vanity Fair’s Lisa Robinson sat down with Rihanna for the magazine’s November cover story, the pop star revealed a singularly celebratory opinion of Dolezal.
“I think she was a bit of a hero, because she kind of flipped on society a little bit,” Rihanna told Robinson during one long-ranging, late-night conversation. “Is it such a horrible thing that she pretended to be black? Black is a great thing, and I think she legit changed people’s perspective a bit and woke people up.”
Earlier this year, Vanity Fair’s Allison Samuels tracked down Dolezal in Spokane, Washington and convinced the former N.A.A.C.P. chapter president to share her story.
“It’s not a costume,” Dolezal explained of her tanned and elaborately coiffed appearance. “I don’t know spiritually and metaphysically how this goes, but I do know that from my earliest memories I have awareness and connection with the black experience, and that’s never left me.”
“Like I said, I’ve had my years of confusion and wondering who I really [was] and why and how do I live my life and make sense of it all, but I’m not confused about that any longer,” Dolezal continued. “I think the world might be—but I’m not.”
To read Dolezal’s story, click here. To read the Rihanna cover story, click here. The November 2015 issue of Vanity Fair, with Rihanna on the cover, will be available on digital and metropolitan newsstands on October 8. The magazine hits national newsstands on October 13.
Source: Vanity Fair