Mexico’s new racial reckoning: A movement protests colorism and white privilege

Posted in Articles, Caribbean/Latin America, History, Mexico, Politics/Public Policy, Social Justice, Social Science on 2022-10-21 19:29Z by Steven

Mexico’s new racial reckoning: A movement protests colorism and white privilege

The Los Angeles Times
2022-10-20

Kate Linthicum, Staff Writer

An ad greets passersby at the new Mitikah mall in Mexico City. (Luis Antonio Rojas/For The Times)

MEXICO CITY — A few months ago, several employees of an upscale Mexico City steakhouse came forward with a damning allegation: The restaurant had a policy of segregation in which the best tables were reserved for the customers with the lightest skin.

The notion of whiter Mexicans getting preferential treatment was not surprising in a country where darker-skinned people have long earned less money, received less schooling and been all but invisible in the media. But the ensuing public outrage was.

Within days, activists mounted a boycott and the city launched an investigation into the restaurant, Sonora Grill Prime, which denied the accusations. Multiple public figures highlighted the scandal as evidence of pervasive bigotry. “Racism is real,” Mayor Claudia Sheinbaum told reporters, using a word long regarded as taboo. “We have to accept that it exists and fight it.”.

For the vast stretch of Mexico’s modern history, many denied that racism existed here at all.

They embraced the nation’s foundational myth that its people are mestizos, a single blended race of indigenous and Spanish blood, insisting that there could be no prejudice if all Mexicans were the same.

But a growing social movement is challenging that thinking, thrusting discussions of discrimination based on skin color to the fore…

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Striving to Sing Our Own Songs: Notes on the Left not Right in Africana Studies

Posted in Articles, History, Literary/Artistic Criticism, Media Archive, Politics/Public Policy, Social Justice on 2022-09-16 20:53Z by Steven

Striving to Sing Our Own Songs: Notes on the Left not Right in Africana Studies

The Discipline and African 2022 World Report
National Council for Black Studies
pages 186-192

Mark Christian, Ph.D., Professor of Africana Studies
City University of New York, New York, New York

By way of an introduction, the last year or more has witnessed an unprecedented upsurge in human insecurity across the globe. Perhaps it is the right time to put some historical context into what this means for peoples of African heritage globally—and more specifically, those located within the borders of the United States. This article will briefly consider the continued battle for Africana liberation, employing a Sankofa perspective—to go back and retrieve for present use. Moreover, there will be a critique of the so-called “Black Radical Left,” as it seems that scrutiny of such scholars rarely occurs. Indeed, many appear “untouchable” in terms of criticism from within Africana studies—yet the same cannot be stated in regard to African-centered scholars who, ironically, argue for largely similar forms of Black liberation. Therefore, while taking into account the developments of the last year for this NCBS annual report, it is necessary to consider some of the various schools of thought in the discipline and the imperative to develop a cross-fertilization of ideas in Africana studies.

In the last 18 months, I have traveled back in time to the 19th and 20th centuries in regard to my research output, completing two major studies (Christian, 2021a, 2021b). It has been palpably worthwhile because one finds that there is nothing particularly original in terms of the struggle for social justice. Of course, there have been major structural changes in the U.S. with the collapse of enslavement in 1865, followed by the ephemeral Reconstruction era, then de jure segregation, followed largely by de facto segregation. Women’s rights have also markedly improved since the 19th century, yet here we are, comfortably into the 2020s, in what could be deemed the “George Floyd era,” wherein the need for racialized justice across the spectrum of society remains ubiquitous. The seemingly insuperable reality of racism remains an ever-present social problem. Meanwhile, Africana scholars, in all their various schools of thought, continue to tackle an array of “isms” in their varied capacities throughout higher education…

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Racial Innocence: Unmasking Latino Anti-Black Bias and the Struggle for Equality

Posted in Books, Latino Studies, Law, Media Archive, Monographs, Politics/Public Policy, Social Justice, Social Science, United States on 2022-08-25 01:05Z by Steven

Racial Innocence: Unmasking Latino Anti-Black Bias and the Struggle for Equality

Beacon Press
2022-08-23
208 pages
5.5 x 8.5 Inches
Hardcover ISBN: ISBN: 978-080702013-5

Tanya Katerí Hernández, Archibald R. Murray Professor of Law
Fordham University School of Law, New York, New York

The first comprehensive book about anti-Black bias in the Latino community that unpacks the misconception that Latinos are “exempt” from racism due to their ethnicity and multicultural background.

Racial Innocence will challenge what you thought about racism and bias, and demonstrate that it’s possible for a historically marginalized group to experience discrimination and also be discriminatory. Racism is deeply complex, and law professor and comparative race relations expert Tanya Katerí Hernández exposes “the Latino racial innocence cloak” that often veils Latino complicity in racism. As Latinos are the second largest ethnic group in the US, this revelation is critical to dismantling systemic racism. Based on interviews, discrimination case files, and civil rights law, Hernández reveals Latino anti-Black bias in the workplace, the housing market, schools, places of recreation, criminal justice, and in Latino families.

By focusing on racism perpetrated by communities outside those of White non-Latino people, Racial Innocence brings to light the many Afro-Latino and African American victims of anti-Blackness at the hands of other people of color. Through exploring the interwoven fabric of discrimination and examining the cause of these issues, we can begin to move toward a more egalitarian society.

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The Portable Anna Julia Cooper

Posted in Anthologies, Autobiography, Biography, Books, Media Archive, Social Justice, United States, Women on 2022-08-25 01:04Z by Steven

The Portable Anna Julia Cooper

Penguin Classics (an imprint of Penguin Random House)
2022-08-09
592 pages
5-1/16 x 7-3/4
Paperback ISBN: 9780143135067
Ebook ISBN: 9780525506713
Audiobook ISBN: 9780593457993

Anna Julia Cooper (1858-1964)

Edited by:

Shirley Moody-Turner, Associate Professor of English and African American Studies
Pennsylvania State University, University Park, Pennsylvania

A collection of essential writings from the iconic foremother of Black women’s intellectual history, feminism, and activism, who helped pave the way for modern social justice movements like Black Lives Matter and Say Her Name

The Portable Anna Julia Cooper brings together, for the first time, Anna Julia Cooper’s major collection of essays, A Voice from the South, along with several previously unpublished poems, plays, journalism and selected correspondences, including over thirty previously unpublished letters between Anna Julia Cooper and W. E. B. Du Bois. The Portable Anna Julia Cooper will introduce a new generation of readers to an educator, public intellectual, and community activist whose prescient insights and eloquent prose underlie some of the most important developments in modern American intellectual thought and African American social and political activism.

Recognized as the iconic foremother of Black women’s intellectual history and activism, Cooper (1858-1964) penned one of the most forceful and enduring statements of Black feminist thought to come of out of the nineteenth century. Attention to her work has grown exponentially over the years–her words have been memorialized in the US passport and, in 2009, she was commemorated with a US postal stamp. Cooper’s writings on the centrality of Black girls and women to our larger national discourse has proved especially prescient in this moment of Black Lives Matter, Say Her Name, and the recent protests that have shaken the nation.

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Asian-White Mixed Identity after COVID-19: Racist Racial Projects and the Effects on Asian Multiraciality

Posted in Articles, Asian Diaspora, Media Archive, Politics/Public Policy, Social Justice, Social Science, United States on 2022-06-23 14:23Z by Steven

Asian-White Mixed Identity after COVID-19: Racist Racial Projects and the Effects on Asian Multiraciality

Genealogy
Volume 6, Issue 2, (2022-06-15)
pages 53-68
DOI: 10.3390/genealogy6020053

Hephzibah Strmic-Pawl, Assistant Professor, Sociology and Anthropology
Manhattanville College, Purchase, New York

Erica Chito Childs, Professor of Sociology
Hunter College, City University of New York, New York, New York

Stephanie Laudone, Assistant Professor of Sociology
Borough of Manhattan Community College, New York, New York

With the onset of the Coronavirus and racist statements about the origins of COVID-19 in China there has been a surge in anti-Asian discrimination in the United States. The U.S. case is worthy of special focus because of former President Trump’s explicit racist rhetoric, referring to the Coronavirus as the “China virus” and “Kung-flu”. This rise in anti-Asian discrimination has led to a heightened awareness of racism against Asians and a corollary increase in AAPI activism. Based on survey and in-depth interview data with Asian-White multiracials, we examine how recent spikes in anti-Asian hate has shifted Asian-White multiracials to have a more heightened awareness of racism and a shift in their racial consciousness. We theorize how multiracials intermediary status on the racial hierarchy can be radically shifted at any moment in relation to emerging racist racial projects, which has broader implications for the status of mixed people globally.

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Visualizing Black Lives: Ownership and Control in Afro-Brazilian Media

Posted in Anthropology, Books, Brazil, Caribbean/Latin America, Communications/Media Studies, Media Archive, Monographs, Politics/Public Policy, Social Justice on 2022-05-07 21:43Z by Steven

Visualizing Black Lives: Ownership and Control in Afro-Brazilian Media

University of Illinois Press
2022-04-26
152 pages
6 x 9 in
12 black & white photographs
Cloth ISBN: 978-0-252-04441-0
Paper ISBN: 978-0-252-08648-9
eBook ISBN: 978-0-252-05340-5

Reighan Gillam, Associate Professor of Anthropology
University of Southern California

A new generation of Afro-Brazilian media producers have emerged to challenge a mainstream that frequently excludes them. Reighan Gillam delves into the dynamic alternative media landscape developed by Afro-Brazilians in the twenty-first century. With works that confront racism and focus on Black characters, these artists and the visual media they create identify, challenge, or break with entrenched racist practices, ideologies, and structures. Gillam looks at a cross-section of media to show the ways Afro-Brazilians assert control over various means of representation in order to present a complex Black humanity. These images–so at odds with the mainstream–contribute to an anti-racist visual politics fighting to change how Brazilian media depicts Black people while highlighting the importance of media in the movement for Black inclusion.

An eye-opening union of analysis and fieldwork, Visualizing Black Lives examines the alternative and activist Black media and the people creating it in today’s Brazil.

Watch IRAAS Conversations | Visualizing Black Lives: Ownership and Control in Afro Brazilian Media on YouTube (01:26:36) here.

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Abolition Democracy’s Forgotten Founder

Posted in Articles, Biography, History, Literary/Artistic Criticism, Media Archive, Social Justice, United States on 2022-05-06 00:38Z by Steven

Abolition Democracy’s Forgotten Founder

Boston Review
2022-04-19

Robin D. G. Kelley, Gary B. Nash Professor of American History
University of California, Los Angeles

T. Thomas Fortune. Image: NYPL

While W. E. B. Du Bois praised an expanding penitentiary system, T. Thomas Fortune called for investment in education and a multiracial, working-class movement.

Nearly every activist I encounter these days identifies as an abolitionist. To be sure, movements to abolish prisons and police have been around for decades, popularizing the idea that caging and terrorizing people makes us unsafe. However, the Black Spring rebellions revealed that the obscene costs of state violence can and should be reallocated for things that do keep us safe: housing, universal healthcare, living wage jobs, universal basic income, green energy, and a system of restorative justice. As abolition recently became the new watchword, everyone scrambled to understand its historical roots. Reading groups popped up everywhere to discuss W. E. B. Du Bois’s classic, Black Reconstruction in America (1935), since he was the one to coin the phrase “abolition democracy,” which Angela Y. Davis revived for her indispensable book of the same title.

I happily participated in Black Reconstruction study groups and public forums meant to divine wisdom for our current movements. But I often wondered why no one was scrambling to resurrect T. Thomas Fortune’s Black and White: Land, Labor, and Politics in the South, published in 1884. After all, it was Fortune who wrote: “The South must spend less money on penitentiaries and more money on schools; she must use less powder and buckshot and more law and equity; she must pay less attention to politics and more attention to the development of her magnificent resources.” Du Bois, on the other hand, praised Reconstruction efforts to establish and improve the penitentiary system in what proved to be a futile effort to eliminate the convict lease. Much shorter but no less powerful, Fortune’s Black and White anticipates Du Bois’s critique of federal complicity in undermining Black freedom, but sharply diverges by declaring Reconstruction a miserable failure. He argues that the South’s problems can be traced to the federal government allowing the slaveholding rebels to return to power and hold the monopoly of land, stripping Black people of their short-lived citizenship rights, and refusing to compensate freed people for generations of unpaid labor. The result was a new kind of slavery: “the United States took the slave and left the thing which gave birth to chattel slavery and which is now fast giving birth to industrial slavery.” Du Bois echoes Fortune, but adds that white labor’s investment in white supremacy ensured “a system of industry which ruined democracy.”…

Read the entire article here.

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How one Civil Rights activist posed as a white man in order to investigate lynchings

Posted in Articles, Audio, Biography, History, Media Archive, Passing, Social Justice, United States on 2022-04-21 20:32Z by Steven

How one Civil Rights activist posed as a white man in order to investigate lynchings

Fresh Air
National Public Radio
2022-03-30

Dave Davies, Guest Host

White Lies author A.J. Baime tells the story of Walter White, a light-skinned Black man whose ancestors had been enslaved. For years White risked his life investigating racial violence in the South.

Listen to the story (00:42:04) and read the transcript here.

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Being Biracial Shouldn’t Be An Excuse To Be Racially Neutral

Posted in Articles, Barack Obama, Media Archive, Social Justice, United States on 2022-04-20 21:14Z by Steven

Being Biracial Shouldn’t Be An Excuse To Be Racially Neutral

Medium
2020-01-26

Dwayne Wong (Omowale)

Whenever Meghan Markle comes up in the news, my mind immediately always comes back to this quote from her:

On the heels of the racial unrest in Ferguson and Baltimore, the tensions that have long been percolating under the surface in the US have boiled over in the most deeply saddening way. And as a biracial woman, I watch in horror as both sides of a culture I define as my own become victims of spin in the media, perpetuating stereotypes and reminding us that the States has perhaps only placed bandages over the problems that have never healed at the root.

I, on the other hand, have healed from the base. While my mixed heritage may have created a grey area surrounding my self-identification, keeping me with a foot on both sides of the fence, I have come to embrace that. To say who I am, to share where I’m from, to voice my pride in being a strong, confident mixed-race woman.

The reason for this is that Markle’s fame is largely based on her racial identity. Not only has she received a great deal of attention for her marriage to Prince Harry, but this attention comes largely from the fact that she is not white. As Funmi Olutoye wrote: “We’ve made it. I say ‘we’ because even though she’s mixed race, the world still looks at her as black.” The notion that the elevation of a single black individual represents black progress is misguided. This is a topic that I addressed when I wrote The Black African Crisis in the Age of a Black President to help dispel the idea that Barack Obama’s presidency in of itself represented collective advancement for black people. But beyond that, Olutoye invokes the one-drop rule to claim Markle for black people, despite the fact that Markle’s remarks demonstrate that Markle clearly regards herself as a biracial woman who stands on the fence between black and white. Markle does not profess to be a black woman…

Read the entire article here.

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June Shagaloff Alexander, School Desegregation Leader, Dies at 93

Posted in Articles, Biography, Media Archive, Passing, Politics/Public Policy, Social Justice, United States, Women on 2022-04-15 00:16Z by Steven

June Shagaloff Alexander, School Desegregation Leader, Dies at 93

The New York Times
2022-04-06

Clay Risen

June Shagaloff in 1953. Thurgood Marshall hired her out of college to work for the N.A.A.C.P. on school desegregation cases. Bill Sullivan/Newsday RM via Getty Images

She helped Thurgood Marshall prepare for his Supreme Court fight and later took on de facto school segregation across the North and West.

June Shagaloff Alexander, whose work for the N.A.A.C.P. and its legal arm in the 1950s and ’60s put her at the forefront of the nationwide fight for school integration and made her a close confidante of civil rights figures like Thurgood Marshall and James Baldwin, died on March 29 at her home in Tel Aviv. She was 93…

…Although she was white, her dark complexion sometimes led people to assume she was Black, to the point of barring her from certain whites-only public spaces, an experience that she said shaped her early commitment to civil rights.

But this ambiguity proved to be an asset in her work. When investigating a segregated school district, she would visit a white school pretending to be a prospective white parent, then do the same at a Black school, pretending to be a prospective Black parent — a ruse that gave her a unique, unvarnished view of the district’s education inequities…

Read the entire obituary here.

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