On September 30, 2009, Chris Rock stopped by The Oprah Show
to talk about his documentary Good Hair
. The film, which aims to get to the root of why African-American women place so much importance on their hair, has sparked conversation—and some controversy—around the country.
Critics of the film say they aren't thrilled Chris has gone public with African-American hair secrets. An Oprah Show
viewer named Shirley writes: "It is not necessary to let every white woman know all that we do to compete and be accepted today. ... Chris, our hair is not a joke. There are some things we need to keep to ourselves to maintain our dignity."
Chris says he feels very strongly that the film should put everything out in the open. "We said they're hair 'secrets,' but you can get these products at any drugstore. You walk by a beauty parlor, you can look in the window. Black women aren't in the basement getting their hair done," he says. "The less secrets you have, the better you feel about yourself."Watch Chris discuss what he wants his daughters to learn from the film.
Chris says young women seem to be open about their hair—but their mothers and grandmothers aren't always as forthcoming. "It's much more a generational thing. I think women of a certain era, I'll say, do hide it," he says. "I think black people of a certain age really care a little too much what white people think and just need to relax and do you."