Would Being Black for an Hour Change Your Perspective?
The women of Hyphen-Labs are using virtual reality to put other people in their shoes.
Photos courtesy Hyphen-Labs
When someone takes a seat in the salon chair and looks in the mirror before them, the face reflecting back is not theirs, but a black woman’s, with an afro. A scene appears: a barren, rocky landscape meant to represent an idealized future. A goddess standing atop a temple proclaims, “There is no pain or suffering in this world. The only limit is your imagination.”
The woman with the afro is a digital character and part of a new effort on the part of three real-life women to address the overlooked social disparity that so few people of color are represented in video games.
The NeuroSpeculative AfroFeminism virtual reality project began to form last July after several high-profile killings of black men by police officers. Carmen Aguilar y Wedge, a Mexican-American designer who called those months last year the “bloody summer of 2016,” and Ashley Baccus-Clark, a black scientist, looked to address the stories of people of color in America by using new mediums and …
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