A mixed-race son choosing his identity is a lesson for us all

Posted in Articles, Family/Parenting, Identity Development/Psychology, Media Archive, United States on 2022-05-06 02:09Z by Steven

A mixed-race son choosing his identity is a lesson for us all

The San Francisco Chronicle
2022-05-03

Kevin Fisher-Paulson

This week, Aidan decided he is Black.

He announced this at the family dinner table, as we served mashed potatoes, green beans and meat loaf. Aidan used to like my meat loaf, but everything changes.

Aidan’s Black now. Partly because he feels more comfortable in his skin at Compass High, whereas I think he felt that he needed to be White while he was at Riordan. Partly because of teenage rebellion. If my husband Brian and I were Black, I’m pretty sure he’d say he was white.

When he was little, he used to insist on his whiteness. One afternoon, after kindergarten, he got into the front seat of the Griffin (our old family car) and announced, “Zane’s the only one who has to sit in the back of the car.” Aidan had missed the nuances in his teacher’s lesson about Rosa Parks. It is one of the few times I’ve ever seen Zane cry.

Aidan’s Black now. Partly, I hope, because he knows that although he and Zane have challenges, underneath it all, they are brothers.

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The Meaning of Multiraciality: A Racially Queer Exploration of Multiracial College Students’ Identity Production

Posted in Books, Campus Life, Forthcoming Media, Gay & Lesbian, Identity Development/Psychology, Monographs, United States on 2022-05-06 01:08Z by Steven

The Meaning of Multiraciality: A Racially Queer Exploration of Multiracial College Students’ Identity Production

Lexington Books (an imprint of Rowman & Littlefield)
June 2022
168 pages
Trim: 6 x 9
Hardback ISBN: 978-1-7936-1727-9
eBook ISBN: 978-1-7936-1728-6

Aurora Chang, Director of Faculty Development and Career Advancement
George Mason University, Fairfax, Virginia

The Meaning of Multiraciality: A Racially Queer Exploration of Multiracial College Students’ Identity Production provides a comprehensive overview of Multiraciality as a term, experience, and identity using data from a study of Multiracial college students and well as the author’s own experiences as a Multiracial person. Utilizing a racially queer framework, they discuss what it means to be a Multiracial insider (being a Multiracial researcher studying Multiracial study participants), the counter-stories of Multiracial college students, the theorizing that has emerged as a result, and the educational consequences and impacts on Mulitracial students overall. The author explores the following questions: How do Multiracial students produce their identities? How do Multiracial students exercise their agency? How does the notion of Multiraciality perpetuate and disrupt notions of race? How can we expand theoretical understandings of race so that they take Multiracial people into account, specifically within educational settings? The author illustrates the agentic ways in which Multiracial college students come to understand and experience the complexity of their racialized identity production. Their counter-narratives reveal an otherwise invisible student population, providing an opportunity to broaden critical discourses around education and race.

Table of Contents

  • Acknowledgments
  • Introduction
  • Chapter One: Multiracial Me
  • Chapter Two: The History and Complexity of the Term, Multiracial
  • Chapter Three: Multiraciality and Critical Race Theory
  • Chapter Four: Multiracial College Students’ Counter-Narratives
  • Chapter Five: Multiracial Students and Educational Implications
  • Chapter Six: Racial Queerness
  • Epilogue
  • References
  • About the Author
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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.”…

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