The term Black excellence refers to a high level of achievement, success, or ability demonstrated by an individual Black person or by Black people in general. The term is often used to highlight and celebrate specific examples of such achievements and abilities, especially as the hashtag #BlackExcellence. In some cases, the term is used to refer to an aspiration or goal to be achieved, or to a mindset used in the pursuit of such success. The term Black excellence is sometimes used in discussions about the disproportionately high levels of work that Black people must do and the abilities they must have to achieve the same success as white people as a result of the anti-Black racism and oppression of white supremacy. Relatedly, the concept is sometimes discussed in critical contexts that point out that people who are considered to exhibit Black excellence often face unreasonably high expectations and standards, especially when they are held up as representative of the entire Black community. In this way, anything less than excellence or perfection may be viewed as failure, creating an impossible standard. Such pressure is often discussed as being detrimental to mental health and overall wellbeing. Still, the term itself is typically used in a positive way in the context of the achievements and success of Black people. This is especially the case when it’s used as a hashtag. Black excellence is often used in the same contexts and in similar ways as other positivity-focused terms like Black joy and Black Girl Magic.
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