Serena Williams says she feels “underpaid and undervalued” compared to white tennis players and has praised the Black Lives Matter movement for bringing to light racial injustice around the world.
The 23-time Grand Slam champion has often been outspoken on issues of racism and sexism throughout her career.
She says feels proud to represent “beautiful dark women” but thinks she has been viewed and treated differently to others around her in the tennis world.
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"Underpaid, undervalued,” she told Vogue when asked how she feels. "I’ve never been a person that has been like, ‘I want to be a different colour’ or ‘I want my skin tone to be lighter.’
I like who I am, I like how I look, and I love representing the beautiful dark women out there.
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Williams also spoke about how BLM has highlighted issues which she has spoken about for her “whole career”.
BLM came to prominence after the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis in May, which sparked anti-racism protests around the world.
“Now, we as black people have a voice - and technology has been a huge part of that," said Williams.
"We see things that have been hidden for years; the things that we as people have to go through. This has been happening for years. People just couldn't pull out their phones and video it before.
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"I think for a minute they (white people) started – not to understand, because I don't think you can understand – but they started to see. I was like: well, you didn't see any of this before? I've been talking about this my whole career. It's been one thing after another."
Williams also says she will continue to use her position to "change the narrative" around black women and loves "being the voice that millions of people don’t have”.
“Tennis is a small play in the whole scheme of things. In this society, women are not taught or expected to be that future leader or future CEO. The narrative has to change.
"And maybe it doesn’t get better in time for me, but someone in my position can show women and people of colour that we have a voice, because Lord knows I use mine.
"I love sticking up for people and supporting women. Being the voice that millions of people don’t have.”