Michelle Obama on Being Labeled Angry Black Woman: 'Dang, You Don't Even Know Me'

First lady Michelle Obama and Oprah Winfrey in an interview airing the night of Dec. 19, 2016, on CBS
Video Screenshot

Ever since Michelle Obama became the first lady of the United States, people have labeled her an "angry black woman," and in her last interview before leaving the White House, she's speaking out about the label.

In an interview with Oprah Winfrey, FLOTUS spoke about what goes through her head every time she hears "angry black woman."


“That was one of those things where you think, ‘Dang, you don’t even know me,’” Michelle Obama said. “You just sort of feel like, ‘Wow, where did that come from?’ And that’s the first blowback.

“You think, ‘That is so not me.’ But then you sort of think, ‘Well, this isn’t about me. This is about the person or the people who write it,’” she continued. “That’s just the truth.”

But what it comes down to is fear, she stated.

“You start thinking, ‘Oh, wow, we’re so afraid of each other,’” she said. “Color. Wealth. These things that don’t matter still play too much of a role in how we see one another, and it’s sad because the thing that least defines us as people is the color of our skin. … It’s our values. It’s how we live our lives. And you can’t tell that from somebody’s race, somebody’s religion. People have to act it out. They have to live those lives.”


But even with all the negativity she's received over the last eight years, it's not stopping her from living out loud.

“I thought, ‘OK, well, let me live my life out loud so that people can then see and then judge for themselves,’” she said. “And that’s what I want young people to do: Just live your life. Live it out loud.”


Michelle Obama's interview with Oprah Winfrey will air on CBS Monday, Dec. 19, at 8 p.m. ET.

Share This Story

Get our newsletter