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The Black Rose My Story of Colourism Silently Lived by Millions

Author Name: Shweta Aggarwal | Format: Paperback | Genre : Biographies & Autobiographies | Other Details

Aged six, Shweta Aggarwal learned that she did not live in a fair world. Indian society at large simply did not equate her dark skin tone with ‘beauty’. She was mercilessly reminded that she was the ‘black sheep’ in her fair-skinned family and taught to believe that only ‘fair is beautiful’. Since then, the shadow of colourism haunted her wherever she lived – be it India, Japan or the UK – until she finally surrendered. But, what does ‘surrendering’ really mean? And what instigated change in her after thirty-eight years?

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Shweta Aggarwal

Shweta Aggarwal is an anti-colourism activist with a colourful life. A computer science engineer by way of background, her passion is dance and writing. After moving to London in 2000, she ran a Bollywood dance company, Threebee (Bold, Beautiful and very Bollywood), alongside working at UBS in their IT department. As the creative director of the company for 10 years, some proud moments include her troupe featuring as a semi-finalist in Britain’s Got Talent 2010 and being invited by the London Olympics team to audition for the closing ceremony in 2012. 

A new passion emerged when she wrapped up the dance company to prioritise family life. The lack of representation in children’s books inspired Shweta to launch the Dev and Ollie series of picture books based on festivals in India. The books are popular in schools and libraries all over the world. Shweta was awarded the Asian Women of Achievement Award for Arts & Culture in 2016 and invited by the late Her Majesty the Queen to Buckingham Palace for the UK-India Year of Culture in 2017. In 2020, triggered by the Black Lives Matter movement, Shweta started writing her memoir based on her journey through colourism from the age of six. Shweta’s mission is simple: to instigate change, for which she is prepared to risk exposing herself to the world.