Passing: Intersections of Race, Gender, Sexuality and Class

Posted in Dissertations, Literary/Artistic Criticism, Media Archive, Passing, United States on 2017-08-02 00:19Z by Steven

Passing: Intersections of Race, Gender, Sexuality and Class

Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University
2017-07-17
379 pages

Dana Christine Volk

Dissertation submitted to the faculty of the Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy In ASPECT: Alliance for Social, Political, Ethical, and Cultural Thought

African American Literature in the 20th century engaged many social and racial issues that mainstream white America marginalized during the pre-civil rights era through the use of rhetoric, setting, plot, narrative, and characterization. The use of passing fostered an outlet for many light-skinned men and women for inclusion. This trope also allowed for a closer investigation of the racial division in the United States during the 20th century. These issues included questions of the color line, or more specifically, how light-skinned men and women passed as white to obtain elevated economic and social status. Secondary issues in these earlier passing novels included gender and sexuality, raising questions as to whether these too existed as fixed identities in society. As such, the phenomenon of passing illustrates not just issues associated with the color line, but also social, economic, and gender structure within society. Human beings exist in a matrix, and as such, passing is not plausible if viewed solely as a process occurring within only one of these social constructs, but, rather, insists upon a viewpoint of an intersectional construct of social fluidity itself. This paper will re-theorize passing from a description solely concerning racial movements into a theory that explores passing as an intersectional understanding of gender, sexuality, race, and class. This paper will focus on contemporary cultural products (e.g., novels) of passing that challenge the traditional notion of passing and focus on an intersectional linkage between race, gender, sexuality, and class.

Read the entire dissertation here.

Tags: , ,

Mixed Signals: Examining Ethnic Affirmation as a Factor in the Discrimination-Depression Relationship with Multiracial and Monoracial Minority Adolescent Girls

Posted in Dissertations, Identity Development/Psychology, Media Archive, United States, Women on 2017-07-11 02:04Z by Steven

Mixed Signals: Examining Ethnic Affirmation as a Factor in the Discrimination-Depression Relationship with Multiracial and Monoracial Minority Adolescent Girls

University of Connecticut
2017-02-15
62 pages

Linda A. Oshin

A Thesis Submitted in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of Master of Science

Multiracial adolescents are a growing segment of our population, but not much is known about their ethnic-racial identity development. The current study examined ethnic affirmation, a dimension of ethnic-racial identity, and race socialization and their influence in the relationship between perceived group discrimination and depressive symptoms among multiracial (n = 42) and monoracial minority Black (n = 29) and Latina (n = 95) adolescents (M=15.4 years). Results showed that there were no mean differences between multiracial and monoracial adolescents in ethnic affirmation, maternal race/ethnic socialization, or depressive symptoms. Multiracial adolescents reported significantly less perceived discrimination. There was also evidence that the indirect effect of perceived discrimination on depressive symptoms via ethnic affirmation differed between multiracial and monoracial adolescents. Implications of these results for treatment and research are discussed.

Read the entire thesis here.

Tags: , ,

The Discourse of Konketsuji: Racialized Representations of Biracial Japanese Children in the 1950s

Posted in Asian Diaspora, Communications/Media Studies, Dissertations, History, Media Archive on 2017-07-11 00:23Z by Steven

The Discourse of Konketsuji: Racialized Representations of Biracial Japanese Children in the 1950s

University of Toronto
March 2017
79 pages

Zachery Anthony Nelson

A thesis submitted in conformity with the requirements for the degree of Master of Arts, Department of East Asian Studies University of Toronto

This study examines textual representations of biracial Japanese children as featured in the print media of 1950s Japan. Attention is paid to the complex discursive process of racialization that produced knowledge of biracial Japanese under the label konketsuji or “mixed-blood child.” This “discourse of konketsuji” is deconstructed and analyzed towards the aim of illustrating how it functioned to disassociate the figure of the konketsuji from the category of “Japanese.” This study situates konketsuji and Japanese racial identity discourse into their proper historical contexts before transitioning to an analysis of primary source material. The discourse of konketsuji is revealed as having racialized konketsuji in a plural and complex manner. Racializing statements about konketsuji referenced difference in phenotype, social origin, political potential, birth circumstances, mentality, intellect, and cultural proclivities so as to position biracial children as a group outside a normative construction of Japanese raciality.

Read the entire thesis here.

Tags: , , , ,

Embodying the Oppressed and the Oppressor: Critical Mixed Race Studies for Liberation and Social Justice Education

Posted in Asian Diaspora, Dissertations, Media Archive, Social Justice, Teaching Resources, United States on 2017-05-03 02:21Z by Steven

Embodying the Oppressed and the Oppressor: Critical Mixed Race Studies for Liberation and Social Justice Education

University of San Francisco
April 2017
71 pages

Gwendlyn C. Snider

A Thesis Presented to The Faculty of the School of Education International and Multicultural Education Department In Partial Fulfillment Of the Requirements for the Degree Master of Arts in International and Multicultural Education

This study will focus on the educational and social experiences of mixed race Filipinx PEP (Pin@y Educational Partnerships) instructors in the San Francisco/Bay Area and the connection of these various, lived experiences to their teaching pedagogy and praxis in Ethnic Studies curriculum. The main purpose of this research is to create additional evidence for the need of critical mixed race studies and acknowledgement of mixed race students’ unique experiences to be valued and included in Ethnic Studies curriculum. In addition, the research will also serve as reaffirmation of not only the efficacy of Ethnic Studies curriculum but also the need for Ethnic Studies at a national and global level for every student regardless of race or cultural background. This research will also examine the ways in which knowing ourselves in connection to our personal histories, ethnicities, and traditions can not only create a stronger sense of identity but also provide the transformation needed for social justice education and activism. When an individual is able to self-actualize and evolve through education, decolonization, and identity formation, they are potentially in a space where they can utilize this knowledge through education and social justice initiatives to teach youth along with connecting and contributing to their local communities.

By conducting detailed qualitative interviews with mixed race PEP teachers, I aim to further reconcile what it means to be a mixed race Filipinx individual specifically teaching Filipinx history and culture in connection to the larger conceptualization of mixed race identity being integrated into Ethnic Studies curriculum. Through the various experiences of PEP instructors, what does it mean to be a mixed race PEP teacher, teaching Filipinx history while grappling with their own identify formation, and how does that play a role into how they teach? Because of the complex nature of mixed race individual experiences, research suggests that mixed race experiences are not yet fully captured by the existing critical theories because a majority of these theories cater to monoracial identities and realities. This study aims to disrupt and dispel stereotypical notions of race, recognize the lived experiences of mixed race individuals, and push forward Ethnic Studies curriculum for all students at all levels.

Read the entire thesis here.

Tags: , , , ,

Japan Reborn: Mixed-Race Children, Eugenic Nationalism, and the Politics of Sex after World War II

Posted in Asian Diaspora, Dissertations, History, Media Archive, United States on 2017-04-06 01:29Z by Steven

Japan Reborn: Mixed-Race Children, Eugenic Nationalism, and the Politics of Sex after World War II

Columbia University
2015
DOI: 10.7916/D83F4NS4

Kristin A. Roebuck, ‎Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow in History
Cornell University, Ithaca, New York

In April 1952, Japan emerged from Allied occupation free, peaceful, and democratic.

Japan’s presses marked the occasion by declaring a state of crisis: the “konketsuji [mixed-blood children] crisis.” By all accounts, Allied soldiers had sired and abandoned two hundred thousand “mixed-blood” orphans in Japan. However, Chapter One reveals this to be a fabricated crisis or “moral panic.” Surveys found only a few thousand konketsuji nationwide, very few of them orphans. Yet these discoveries did little to change the tenor of “crisis.” Opposition politicians deployed wrath and fear over “blood mixing” to discredit the dominant Liberal Party and its alliance with the United States. They were abetted by an array of postwar activists who used the “crisis” to reconstruct Japanese nationalism, laid low by defeat and occupation, on a new basis: the “pure” race rather than the failed state.

Chapter Two explores how the panic over “blood mixing” inevitably embroiled not just children but women as well. Japanese women were subject to intense pressures to eschew sex and family formation with Western men, and to abort “mixed” fetuses on eugenic grounds rather than bear them to term. 1948 marked the beginning of the end of criminal prosecution of abortion in Japan. The law that inaugurated this shift, the Eugenic Protection Law (EPL), is generally viewed as an advancement in women’s rights, despite the fact that the EPL envisioned and promoted the use of abortion as a means of managing the “quality and quantity” of Japan’s population.

Scholarship on the links between eugenics and the decriminalization of abortion in Japan is vast, but scholars have yet to probe deeply into how eugenic abortion was applied to control—or forestall—“race mixing” after the war. Although it was politically impossible for the government to impose abortions outright on women who might be pregnant with the children of Japan’s conquerors, such women were nonetheless targeted for eugenic intervention. For these women, abortion was not an option granted in a liberal democracy concerned with women’s rights. Abortion was an imperative imposed by a diverse array of governmental and non-governmental actors united behind an ideology of “pure blood.”

Chapter Three explains how postwar scientific presses framed konketsuji born in the wake of World War II as an unprecedented presence. Geneticists, physical anthropologists, clinicians, and other researchers from the late 1940s through the 1970s deployed a “system of silences” to erase Japan’s prewar konketsuji community from view. They thereby not only constructed the Japanese as a racial community bounded by “pure blood,” but denied that the racialized nation ever had or ever could assimilate foreign elements. Scientific spokesmen effected the discursive purification of Japan despite resistance from “mixed-blood” adults who organized to contest the rising tide of racial nationalism. In the process, these scientists severely undercut the “mixed” community’s advocacy of a civically rather than biologically constituted nation.

Chapter Four contrasts the decline of race science and eugenics in the West with their efflorescence in postwar Japan, where conditions of occupation heightened the relevance of racial eugenics as a prescription for national unity and strength. It is well known that Anglophone genetics and physical anthropology were led at the mid-century by immigrants and minorities, prominently including Theodosius Dobzhansky and Ashley Montagu. Yet without comparative analysis, it is difficult to weigh the significance of this fact, or of the fact that minorities did not lead the Japanese sciences. Japanese geneticists and anthropologists who identified as having “pure Japanese blood” never questioned that biopolitical category or the costs it imposed on those it excluded.

I argue that who practiced science counts for much more than is allowed by objectivist narratives of self-correcting scientific “progress.” My project explains for the first time why racial nationalism and an ethos of ethnic cleansing triumphed in Japan at the very moment these forces receded in other contexts.

Embargoed until 2017-06-30.

Tags: , , , ,

Memories of race: representations of mixed race people in girls’ comic magazines in post-occupation Japan

Posted in Asian Diaspora, Dissertations, Literary/Artistic Criticism, Media Archive, United States, Women on 2017-03-14 23:18Z by Steven

Memories of race: representations of mixed race people in girls’ comic magazines in post-occupation Japan

Sayuri Arai

University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign
2016-11-30

As the number of mixed race people grows in Japan, anxieties about miscegenation in today’s context of intensified globalization continue to increase. Indeed, the multiracial reality has recently gotten attention and led to heightened discussions surrounding it in Japanese society, specifically, in the media. Despite the fact that race mixing is not a new phenomenon even in “homogeneous” Japan, where the presence of multiracial people has challenged the prevailing notion of Japaneseness, racially mixed people have been a largely neglected group in both scholarly literature and in wider Japanese society.

My dissertation project offers a remedy for this absence by focusing on representations of mixed race people in postwar Japanese popular culture. During and after the U.S. Occupation of Japan (1945-1952), significant numbers of racially mixed children were born of relationships between Japanese women and American servicemen. American-Japanese mixed race children, as products of the occupation, reminded the Japanese of their war defeat. Miscegenation and mixed race people came to be problematized in the immediate postwar years.

In the 1960s, when Japan experienced the postwar economic miracle and redefined itself as a great power, mixed race Japanese entertainers (e.g., models, actors, and singers) became popular. This popularity of multiracial entertainers created a konketsuji boom (mixed-blood boom) in Japanese media and popular culture. As such, the images and stereotypes of racially mixed people shifted considerably from the 1950s into the 1970s.

Through a close textual analysis of representations of mixed race stars and characters in major Japanese girls’ comic magazines published during the 1950s and 1960s, my dissertation illuminates the ways in which the meanings of mixed race people shifted from strongly negative to ambivalent, or even positive, in the context of postwar economic growth. Closely looking at the changing U.S.-Japan relations in the aftermath of World War II and in the Cold War context, this project provides insight into the ways in which memories of World War II and of the U.S. Occupation are reconstructed through representations of mixed race people in Japanese media and popular culture in postwar Japan.

As this dissertation project suggests, girls’ comic magazines are one of the few pivotal spaces where issues of race mixing in postwar Japan are allowed to be openly and regularly discussed, and where a wide range of multiracial people are portrayed in imaginative ways. As I argue, in the early post-occupation years, the overrepresentation of Black-Japanese occupation babies in girls’ comic magazines inadvertently contributed to foisting the blame of the former Western Occupation onto Black bodies and to reconstructing the image of the West.

Subsequently, during the 1960s, the whiteness of mixed race stars and characters, glorified in consumerist media culture, greatly contributed to overshadowing the image of the West as the former enemy and to dissociating racially mixed people from the stigma of being “occupation babies,” intimately entangled with the memory of Japan’s defeat in World War II.

My dissertation demonstrates that representations of racially mixed people in girls’ comic magazines played a crucial role in remaking the meanings of mixed race Japanese and reconstructing memories of World War II and the U.S. Occupation, in part because girls’ comic magazines have elaborated a distinct aesthetics, ethics, and worldview shaped within girls’ culture.

Login to read the dissertation here.

Tags: , ,

Who Needs Hybridity? The Political Limits of Mixed Race Identity

Posted in Canada, Dissertations, Identity Development/Psychology, Media Archive on 2017-03-07 21:12Z by Steven

Who Needs Hybridity? The Political Limits of Mixed Race Identity

University of Toronto
November 2016
153 pages

Emily Alanna Moorhouse

A thesis submitted in conformity with the requirements for the degree of Masters of Arts Department of Social Justice Education Ontario Institute for Studies in Education

This thesis examines how non-white, mixed race women with Asian heritage understand, participate in, and resist colonialism, anti-blackness and anti-Indigeneity. The study finds that mixed race identification is contextual and shifts according to the racial make-up of spaces. Participants performed their identities in white spaces differently than in communities of colour. Although all participants could name whiteness, their awareness of the racial and colonial basis of citizenship was situated on a spectrum. The thesis explores how race is understood through multiple axes of identity such as disability, gender, and sexuality. Although the family is often a good space to learn about race, multiracial families sometimes reproduced ableism, queer-phobia, anti-blackness and shadism. Lastly, I focus on how hybridity is a sexualized discourse that contributes to the fetishization of multiraciality. I highlight the sexualized forms of violence that multiracial women encounter.

Read the entire thesis here.

Tags: , , ,

In Plain Sight: Changing Representations of “Biracial” People in Film 1903-2015

Posted in Communications/Media Studies, Dissertations, Media Archive, United States on 2017-02-09 21:26Z by Steven

In Plain Sight: Changing Representations of “Biracial” People in Film 1903-2015

Marquette University, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
December 2016
247 pages

Charles Lawrence Gray

A Dissertation submitted to the Faculty of the Graduate School, Marquette University, In Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for The Degree of Doctor of Philosophy (Educational Policy and Leadership)

Rooted in slavery, the United States in both law and custom has a long history of adhering to the one drop rule–the stipulation that any amount of African ancestry constitutes an individual as black. Given this history, decidedly mixed race people have been subjected to a number of degrading stereotypes. In examining the three broad themes of the tragic mulatto, racial passing, and racelessness in cinema, this dissertation asks to what extent film representations of mixed race characters have had the capacity to educate audiences beyond stereotypes. Although a number of film scholars and critics have analyzed mixed race characters in American cinema, there is no treatment spanning the last century that comprehensively analyzes each film’s capacity to diminish racism.

Read the entire dissertation here.

Tags: , , ,

Exploring Classification of Black-White Biracial Students in Oregon Schools

Posted in Dissertations, Media Archive, Politics/Public Policy, Teaching Resources, United States on 2017-01-25 20:55Z by Steven

Exploring Classification of Black-White Biracial Students in Oregon Schools

University of Oregon
December 2012
145 pages

Deana M. James

Presented to the Department of Educational Methodology, Policy, and Leadership  and the Graduate School of the University of Oregon in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy

Multiracial children constitute one of the fastest growing racial groups in the United States. However, biracial children, in particular Black-White biracial children, often are not recognized in the educational system. For instance, the current classification of Black-White biracial students in the state and federal educational systems is not disaggregated and does not allow for analyses of educational outcomes for this population. Not only is this population invisible in state education data, the demographic data at the school level often fail to represent this population. Not acknowledging multiple heritages dismisses the identity and experiences of students who are multiracial and thus symbolically negates a part of who they are. Additionally, multiracial students may be classified in a single category by administrators for the purposes of schools and funding. This study offers the perspective of administrators and current state and federal policies on this issue as applied to Black-White self-identified children and describes the complexities and relevance of addressing multiracial policies in educational systems. An ecological theoretical framework is used to explore four research questions in this area. Data were collected from seven school district administrators across Oregon through semi-structured interviews and document analysis. Relationships in the data between responses and procedures from the seven sampled school districts are examined. Results suggest that across the seven school districts in this study, implementation of the policies and procedures of racial and ethnic categorization varied substantially. Furthermore, even though this revised race and ethnicity reporting policy was in part created to more accurately represent the multiracial population, it may actually be obscuring the multiple identities of these students. Detailed policy implications are discussed in further details in the Conclusions chapter.

Read the entire dissertation here.

Tags: , , ,

White Mothers of Black Biracial Children: Mixed Race as the New Mulatto

Posted in Communications/Media Studies, Dissertations, Family/Parenting, Media Archive, United States, Women on 2016-11-27 23:16Z by Steven

White Mothers of Black Biracial Children: Mixed Race as the New Mulatto

Colorado State University
Summer 2016
101 pages

Erin Halcyon Bell

In partial fulfillment of the requirements For the Degree of Masters of Arts

This research explores how White women perceive their roles as parents to “mixed” race or biracial Black children. This qualitative project analyzes data from in person interviews, photographs and comments posted on Internet blogs, Facebook fan pages of mixed race children. Core elements of grounded theory are used as methodology to explore how White women understand themselves in relation to the role they play in pursuing their desire to create a mixed race or biracial child. Emerging themes from this research include: Objectification of Mixed Race Children, “We are going to get designer babies!” Displacing Black Women, and “I have mixed kids, so I can’t be racist.”

Read the entire thesis here.

Tags: , , ,