West African Folklore Proves Black Mermaids Have Been Around For CENTURIES!

halle bailey performing the song baby girl live
L. Graciella Maiolatesi
September 21, 2022

Recently Disney’s live-action “The Little Mermaid” trailer dropped. There was Halle Bailey playing Ariel — a Black Princess!

But while we celebrated, a WHOLE NEW LEVEL of white jealousy showed itself.

Within hours the trailer had 1.5 million dislikes on YouTube! Across social media was the hashtag “#NotMyAriel” with white supremacists claiming Disney was causing white erasure. 

Disney’s original Little Mermaid is based on a Danish fairytale by Hans Andersen, so white supremacists stated “white Ariel” is historically accurate— ironically, the mermaid in Andersen’s version is green. 

But the ORIGINAL mermaids were Black!

Centuries before Andersen’s publication African folklore depicted the REAL Queen of the sea — Mami Wata.

A West African legend, Mami Wata is a water spirit, shape shifter, and mermaid. She’s worshipped and feared as protector of all water bodies.

And since roughly 1.8 million enslaved Africans were thrown overboard during the Middle Passage, it’s likely Mami Wata guided them on their spirit journey — Black ancestral energy can be felt within ocean currents!

Halle Bailey stated, "I want the little girl in me and the little girls just like me who are watching to know that they're special.” 

Like Bailey, we must not let white foolishness keep us from our spotlight — Black children need to see their dreams can become realities.

We have a quick favor to ask:

PushBlack is a nonprofit dedicated to raising up Black voices. We are a small team but we have an outsized impact:

  • We reach tens of millions of people with our BLACK NEWS & HISTORY STORIES every year.
  • We fight for CRIMINAL JUSTICE REFORM to protect our community.
  • We run VOTING CAMPAIGNS that reach over 10 million African-Americans across the country.

And as a nonprofit, we rely on small donations from subscribers like you.

With as little as $5 a month, you can help PushBlack raise up Black voices. It only takes a minute, so will you please ?

Share This Article: