Out of the Binary and Beyond the Spectrum: Redefining and Reclaiming Native American Race

Posted in Articles, Media Archive, Native Americans/First Nation, Philosophy, United States on 2018-08-14 02:56Z by Steven

Out of the Binary and Beyond the Spectrum: Redefining and Reclaiming Native American Race

Critical Philosophy of Race
Volume 6, Issue 2, 2018
pages 216-238
DOI: 10.5325/critphilrace.6.2.0216

Alex R. Steers-Mccrum
Graduate Center, City University of New York

Race in the United States is most often talked about in terms of black and white, sometimes as a spectrum running from whiteness to blackness. Such a conception does not map onto actual racial structures in the United States and excludes Native Americans. This article will criticize this binary, detailing a theory of race in which colonialism and racism are prior to racial formation, following Patrick Wolfe and Michael Omi and Howard Winant. In assembling this theory, this article attempts to bridge philosophical critical race studies and Native American and Indigenous Peoples studies. It argues that to be a member of a race is to be in a relationship of dominance and resistance with settler colonialism. It discusses the implications of a political mode (following Tommie Shelby) of Native race in greater detail, including how it can be differentiated from ethnicity and tribal identity, and how it might be politically useful in anti-domination solidarity. Finally, the article examines the similarities and differences between Native race as construed here and concepts of being Indigenous, suggesting that what Indigenous is at the global level, Native race may be at the local.

Read or purchase the article here.

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Black on the Outside, White on the Inside: Peter Abelard’s Use of Race

Posted in Articles, Europe, Literary/Artistic Criticism, Media Archive, Philosophy, Religion on 2018-08-14 02:39Z by Steven

Black on the Outside, White on the Inside: Peter Abelard’s Use of Race

Critical Philosophy of Race
Volume 6, Issue 2, 2018
pages 135-163
DOI: 10.5325/critphilrace.6.2.0135

Colleen Mccluskey, Professor of Philosophy
Saint Louis University, St. Louis, Missouri

In his reply to Heloise’s complaints in the fourth of the so-called personal letters, Peter Abelard (a twelfth-century theologian) draws upon the figure of the Ethiopian queen from the biblical Song of Songs, who proclaims that she is black on the outside but beautiful on the inside. While some scholars have interpreted his discussion as a commentary on the persona of a nun, this article considers what Abelard’s remarks might mean for understanding the development of the concept of race in Western thought. In particular, it considers whether Abelard’s discussion, both in the letter and in his metaphysical writings, challenges the common (although not universal) position that Europeans did not develop a concept of race until at least the early modern period. It examines these texts to determine the extent to which his remarks reveal congruities or differences with later more explicit conceptions of race.

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“The Fixity of Whiteness”: Genetic Admixture and the Legacy of the One-Drop Rule

Posted in Articles, Health/Medicine/Genetics, History, Media Archive, Philosophy, Social Science on 2018-08-14 02:25Z by Steven

“The Fixity of Whiteness”: Genetic Admixture and the Legacy of the One-Drop Rule

Critical Philosophy of Race
Volume 6, Issue 2, 2018
pages 239-261
DOI: 10.5325/critphilrace.6.2.0239

Jordan Liz

There has been increasing attention given to the way in which racial genetic clusters are constructed within population genetics. In particular, some scholars have argued that the conception of “whiteness” presupposed is such analyses is inherently problematic. In light of these ongoing discussions, this article aims to further clarify and develop this implicit relationship between whiteness, purity and contemporary genetics by offering a Foucauldian critique of the discourse of race within these genetic admixture studies. The goals of this article, then, are twofold: first, to unearth some of the presuppositions operative in this genetics discourse that make possible a biological conception of race; and second, to examine some of the social and historical origins of those presuppositions. To this end, this article provides a brief genealogy of racial purity beginning with its formal legal codification in the one-drop rule.

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Emma Dabiri: The Diaspora Diva on trolls, modelling and growing up black in Dublin

Posted in Articles, Biography, Europe, Media Archive, United Kingdom on 2018-08-14 00:20Z by Steven

Emma Dabiri: The Diaspora Diva on trolls, modelling and growing up black in Dublin

Sunday Independent
2018-08-14

Donal Lynch

Emma Dabiri, author, TV presenter, model is very much at home in London but she's an Irish girl at heart. Photo: Jonathan Goldberg
Emma Dabiri, author, TV presenter, model is very much at home in London but she’s an Irish girl at heart. Photo: Jonathan Goldberg

With her BBC series about to air, academic and broadcaster Emma Dabiri spoke to Donal Lynch

It’s a sweltering afternoon and on a quiet London side street, outside an impossibly chic bakery (it’s where Meghan and Harry had their wedding cake made), academic, author and former-model Emma Dabiri is taking a well-earned break from working on the final manuscript for her forthcoming book: Don’t Touch My Hair.

Before we meet I half considered this a slightly redundant admonition for polite society – why would anyone, bar someone with latent Harvey Weinstein tendencies, touch a woman’s hair unbidden? – but, in person, you can see where the temptation might arise. In this most genteel of settings, Emma’s hair is an event, a happening, a lustrously-beautiful nimbus that frames her fine features. Curiosity and generations of cultural racism seem to spur the urge to pet it, stroke it. I heroically resist, but others are not so strong.

“A few weeks ago a woman reached out to touch my hair on the tube and as she put out her hand she said ‘wait… you don’t like that, do you?’ It was as though some dim memory of editorials she’d read somewhere, came bursting through; she remembered and held herself back a bit.”

Growing up in Dublin, it happened all the time. It was constant. Often kids would just say “oh my God, look at her hair, it’s mad” and come right over and have a feel and a chat”, she recalls. “It felt strange and objectifying. I found it strange because I wouldn’t even touch someone’s dog without asking them. I never questioned all of the treatments (that are used to ‘relax’ black hair) but they weren’t always available to me because it’s difficult to get those products in Ireland. My mum would work in Liverpool or Manchester, and there you could get a curly perm, which is sort of like defined curls, rather than afro hair…

…As for whether she feels ‘more’ Irish or Nigerian, “people often ask me that. To me, it’s not a relevant question. First of all, I was born and raised in Ireland, but really I don’t feel I have to choose. I identify as both black and Irish, it may be unusual – although happily increasingly less so – but the two are not mutually exclusive!…

Read the entire article here.

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Obama: An Oral History

Posted in Barack Obama, Books, Media Archive, Monographs, Politics/Public Policy, United States on 2018-08-13 23:44Z by Steven

Obama: An Oral History

Little A (An Imprint of Amazon Publishing)
2018-07-10
506 pages
6 x 1 x 9 inches
Hardcover ISBN: 978-1503951662
Paperback ISBN: 978-1503951655

Brian Abrams

The first ever comprehensive oral history of President Obama’s administration and the complex political machine that created and powered a landmark American presidency.

In this candid oral history of a presidential tenure, author Brian Abrams reveals the behind-the-scenes stories that illuminate the eight years of the Obama White House through more than one hundred exclusive interviews. Among those given a voice in this extraordinary account are Obama’s cabinet secretaries; his teams of speechwriters, legal advisers, and campaign strategists; as well as lawmakers on both sides of the aisle who fought for or against his agenda. They recall the early struggles of an idealistic outsider candidate and speak openly about the exacting work that led to cornerstone legislation. They share the failures and dissent that met Obama’s efforts and revisit the paths to his accomplishments. As eyewitnesses to history, their accounts combine to deliver an unfiltered view of Obama’s battle to deliver on his promise of hope and change.

This provocative collage of anecdotes, personal reminiscences, and impressions from confidants and critics not only provides an authoritative window into the events that defined an era but also offers the first published account into the making of the forty-fourth president of the United States—one that history will soon not forget.

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The Complicated History Behind Beyoncé’s Discovery About the ‘Love’ Between Her Slave-Owning and Enslaved Ancestors

Posted in Articles, History, Media Archive, Slavery, United States on 2018-08-13 23:30Z by Steven

The Complicated History Behind Beyoncé’s Discovery About the ‘Love’ Between Her Slave-Owning and Enslaved Ancestors

TIME
2018-08-10

Arica L. Coleman

The Life of Sally Hemings exhibit at Monticello is pictured on June 16, 2018 in Charlottesville, Va. (Photo by /For The Washington Post via Getty Images)
The Life of Sally Hemings exhibit at Monticello is pictured on June 16, 2018 in Charlottesville, Va. (Photo by /For The Washington Post via Getty Images) Eze Amos—The Washington Post/Getty Images

With Beyoncé’s appearance on the cover of the September issue of Vogue, the magazine highlights three facets of the superstar’s character for particular focus: “Her Life, Her Body, Her Heritage.” The words she shares are deeply personal, and that last component also offers a window into a complicated and misunderstood dynamic that affects all of American history. While opening up about her family’s long history of dysfunctional marital relationships, she hints at an antebellum relationship that defies that trend: “I researched my ancestry recently,” she stated, “and learned that I come from a slave owner who fell in love with and married a slave.”

She doesn’t elaborate on how she made the discovery or what is known about those individuals, but fans will know that Beyoncé Knowles-Carter is a native of Houston whose maternal and paternal forbears hailed from Louisiana and Alabama, respectively. Her characterization of her heritage stands out because those states, like others across the South, had stringent laws and penalties against interracial marriage. In fact, throughout the colonial and antebellum eras, interracial marriage would have been the exception — even though interracial sex was the rule…

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Beyoncé in Her Own Words: Her Life, Her Body, Her Heritage

Posted in Articles, Autobiography, Media Archive, United States on 2018-08-13 23:12Z by Steven

Beyoncé in Her Own Words: Her Life, Her Body, Her Heritage

Vogue
September 2018 (2018-08-06)

Beyoncé Knowles-Carter
Tyler Mitchell, Photography

Pregnancy & Body Acceptance

After the birth of my first child, I believed in the things society said about how my body should look. I put pressure on myself to lose all the baby weight in three months, and scheduled a small tour to assure I would do it. Looking back, that was crazy. I was still breastfeeding when I performed the Revel shows in Atlantic City in 2012. After the twins, I approached things very differently…

Ancestry

I come from a lineage of broken male-female relationships, abuse of power, and mistrust. Only when I saw that clearly was I able to resolve those conflicts in my own relationship. Connecting to the past and knowing our history makes us both bruised and beautiful.

I researched my ancestry recently and learned that I come from a slave owner who fell in love with and married a slave. I had to process that revelation over time. I questioned what it meant and tried to put it into perspective. I now believe it’s why God blessed me with my twins. Male and female energy was able to coexist and grow in my blood for the first time. I pray that I am able to break the generational curses in my family and that my children will have less complicated lives…

Read the entire article here.

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Hapa Tales and Other Lies

Posted in Asian Diaspora, Autobiography, Books, Forthcoming Media, Monographs, Oceania, Social Justice on 2018-08-11 18:37Z by Steven

Hapa Tales and Other Lies

2018-09-15
210 pages
Paperback ISBN: 978-1-732484702

Sharon H. Chang

HapaTales_Cover_0706_2

In her first work of literary nonfiction, Sharon H. Chang reflects critically on her Asian American, Mixed Race, and activist identity through the prism of returning to Hawai‘i as a tourist. While visiting O‘ahu and Kaua‘i she considers childhood trips to Maua‘i and the Big Island, pop culture and Hollywood movies of her youth that perpetuated Hawaiian stereotypes, and what it means that she has been stereotyped as a “Hawai‘i Girl” her whole life though she has never lived on the islands. But what begins as a journey to unpack the ways she has been perceived and treated as a multiracial woman evolves into much more as Sharon learns the real impacts of colonization and corporate tourism on Hawai‘i and uncovers what her Asian multiracial “mainland” identity actually looks like in relationship to the land, its Indigenous peoples, and the Native Hawaiian Sovereignty Movement.

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Hope Never Dies

Posted in Barack Obama, Books, Media Archive, Novels, United States on 2018-08-11 18:19Z by Steven

Hope Never Dies

Quirk Books
2018-07-10
304 pages
Paperback ISBN: 9781683690399
e-Book ISBN: 9781683690405

Andrew Shaffer

Cover for Hope Never Dies

Vice President Joe Biden and President Barack Obama team up in this high-stakes thriller that combines a mystery worthy of Watson and Holmes with the laugh-out-loud bromantic chemistry of Lethal Weapon’s Murtaugh and Riggs.

Vice President Joe Biden is fresh out of the Obama White House and feeling adrift when his favorite railroad conductor dies in a suspicious accident, leaving behind an ailing wife and a trail of clues. To unravel the mystery, “Amtrak Joe” re-teams with the only man he’s ever fully trusted: the 44th president of the United States. Together they’ll plumb the darkest corners of Delaware, traveling from cheap motels to biker bars and beyond, as they uncover the sinister forces advancing America’s opioid epidemic.

Part noir thriller and part bromance, Hope Never Dies is essentially the first published work of Obama/Biden fiction—and a cathartic read for anyone distressed by the current state of affairs.

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If you ask me what I am

Posted in Articles, Asian Diaspora, Autobiography, Media Archive, United States on 2018-08-11 18:05Z by Steven

If you ask me what I am

The Daily Californian
Berkeley, California
2018-08-11

Jasmine Tatah, Senior Staff

jasmine-tatah-online

Mixed Feelings

I used to welcome personal questions about race and identity. Where is my family from? What’s my ethnic background? Where does my last name come from? However ambiguously or indirectly they were phrased, they all came across as equally amusing. If someone was curious about my heritage, that was fine with me. I considered the attention to be flattering.

There was one day in my senior year of high school when my biology teacher wanted to illustrate the scope of human genetic variation. She pulled up a National Geographic article on mixed-race Americans, scrolled through the various faces pictured and remarked, “Aren’t they beautiful?” The idea that mixed people were considered beautiful wasn’t new to me, but in that moment, her remark made me want to vomit. Was that all she had to say?

Moments like that made me question what others really thought about me. Could I ever be uncoupled from my racial identity? Could my internal connection to my roots ever be uncoupled from my external appearance? Was my race always the first thing people wondered about me and the primary way people identified me?…

Read the entire article here.

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