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Why It Matters: Viola Davis’ Emmy Win

As you probably already heard, Viola Davis’ Emmy win was more than historical —the actress is the first black woman to win for a drama, but during her acceptance speech, she took the opportunity to address the lack of non-white representation in the media. 

“The only thing that separates women of color from anyone else is opportunity.”

So why does this matter? Davis is right — “You cannot win an Emmy for roles that are simply not there.” 

The only women of color representation we ever see in the media are stereotypes; token characters that don’t contribute anything valuable to story lines. 

There’s a call to action hidden in Davis’ speech. She names a few writers that have given women of color complex roles.


Thank you for your heartfelt speech, Viola. Your words certainly pushed forth a movement.

Kristina Bugante is the Campus Correspondent for HC La Verne. She is currently finishing her final year at the University of La Verne and will receive a B.A. in journalism in the spring of 2016. In addition to Her Campus, Kristina is a staff photographer for her school's publications and a news intern for a Los Angeles television news station. When she's not living and breathing journalism, Kristina likes funny Vines, food, catching up on her YouTube subscriptions and singing quietly to herself in her car.
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