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Tuesday, February 13, 2007
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March 2007 Vogue Power Issue

Jennifer Hudson makes history as the first African American singer to grace the cover of Vogue alone. She follows Beverly Johnson [first on American Vogue], Oprah and Halle Berry as one of the few African American woman to be on the cover of the "fashion bible." She is the fourth non-model to cover the magazine (the others being noted before and Marion Jones).
She was photographed in gowns by Carolina Herrara and J. Mendel by the amazing Annie Leibovitz at the Apollo Theatre in Harlem, NY. The article is written by Editor-at-Large Andre Leon Talley who has also been responsible for the lovely gowns Jennifer has worn on the red carpet!

The piece also covers the former American Idol contestant's emphasis on family. Hudson says, "My grandmother always taught me, 'If you don't have a home, family, and church, you don't have anything.' " She also has code names for the awards shows. (Golden Globes are Hot Dog, Oscars are Hot Dog II.)

You can pick up this issue, February 20th. Along with her on the cover of GIANT and Essence Magazines!

However, Donyale Luna, born Peggy Anne Freeman was actually the first African American to be on the cover of any Vogue, though she was of mixed heritage and because of racial tension in the 60s, she often did not disclose the fact that she was actually African American. As you can see on her March 1966 cover of British Vogue, she was photographed with hand covering her features as to not "offend" the white readers.

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According to Judy Stone, who wrote a corrosive profile of Luna for The New York Times in 1968, the model was "secretive, mysterious, contradictory, evasive, mercurial, and insistent upon her multiracial lineage -- exotic, chameleon strands of Mexican, American Indian, Chinese, Irish, and, last but least escapable, Negro."

Media interest in Luna's racial heritage seemed to cause her enormous discomfort and in interviews, she tended bristle when she was described as black or Negro. ("She's white, didn't you know?" a boyfriend told Stone.) When Stone asked her about whether her appearances in Hollywood films would benefit the cause of black actresses, Luna disdainfully answered, "If it brings about more jobs for Mexicans, Chinese, Indians, Negroes, groovy. It could be good, it could be bad. I couldn't care less."