People Of Color With Albinism Ask: Where Do I Belong?

People Of Color With Albinism Ask: Where Do I Belong?

Code Switch: Frontiers of Race, Culture and Ethnicity
National Public Radio

Anjuli Sastry

Growing up, Natalie Devora always questioned how she fit into her African-American family.

“Everyone was brown, and then there was me,” Devora says. “I’m a white-skinned black woman. That’s how I navigate through the world. That’s how I identify.”

Devora has albinism, a rare genetic expression that leads to little or no melanin production. No matter what race or ethnicity someone with albinism is, their skin and hair appear white because of a lack of pigment. It is estimated that one out of every 18,000 to 20,000 people born in America each year has some form of albinism, according to the National Organization for Albinism and Hypopigmentation.

Devora grew up in Oakland, Calif., where, every so often, strangers would ask her mother about her “white” child. It made Devora question where she belonged…

…That brings us back to the original question. In a society where race is intrinsic to the fabric of our society — leaving aside the myths of post-racialism and colorblind politics — where do people of color, but without color, fit? Do they need to fit? And how should everyone else change their own perceptions about albinism?…

Read the entire article here.

Tags: , , , , , , ,