Challenge Accepted: Why are Women and Celebrities Posting Black and White Photos in Social Media?

Over the weeks our Instagram Feed has been filled with women both famous and not posting Black and white images of themselves with caption “Challenge accepted” and the hashtag #womensupportingwomen. According to reports this particular so called ‘challenge’ has two origin stories. One is that it was started in the year 2016 to rise awareness on cancer. According to the Metro UK, monochrome photos with the phrase ‘challenge accepted’ originated from a 2016 Social Media challenge to raise cancer awareness. Since then, the hashtag has popped up on several occasions for numerous other challenges and the #womensupportingwomen happens to be one of them. The hashtag has over 4.1 million posts on Instagram.

A darker origin story comes from Turkey. Where it was said to have started by Turkish Women as a response to the increase in femicide rate and the conservative government laws. According to a study about 42% of Turkish Women between the age of 15-60 have experienced domestic and sexual violence. The honor killing rates in the country are also alarmingly high.Several sources report that the campaign broke out as a form of protest against violence faced Turkish women, which has hit an all-time high during the COVID-19 pandemic. The challenge is said to have re-surfaced when a 27-year-old Pinar Gultekin a university student was reported missing on July 16 and found brutally murdered by her former partner in the woods five days later. It was started as a ridicule on how any women can loose their lives  in the hands of conservative government laws and have their B&W picture appear in newspaper. However this is also subjected to a debate.

There is also speculation that a female U.S Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez was called out by a very sexist comment by her male colleague during her speech in the house of representatives. Many believe that this might have led to an increase in social media posts emphasising female empowerment and women supporting women.

However many have expressed doubts about the trend, offering more tangible ways to support other women then simply posting a good looking image of oneself. The relevance of any empowering social moment is lost if the meaning of it is not delivered just as strongly as it’s aesthetics.

Over the past several days, many Instagram feeds have been overrun with black-and-white images of our favourite celebrities accompanied by captions about “supporting women.”

Scroll Through To Checkout Celebs Posts on this Challenge!







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