“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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The demise of the white majority is a myth

Posted in Articles, Census/Demographics, Media Archive, Politics/Public Policy, Social Science, United States on 2018-05-19 16:54Z by Steven

The demise of the white majority is a myth

The Washington Post
2018-05-18

Dowell Myers, Professor
Sol Price School of Public Policy, University of Southern California

Morris Levy, Assistant Professor of Political Science
University of Southern California


Meghan Markle, engaged to Britain’s Prince Harry, with her mother, Doria Ragland. (Steve Parsons/Agence France-Presse/Getty Images)

The tale of the coming white minority has roiled American politics. A recent political science study shows that white anxiety over lost status tipped the last election to Donald Trump, and Democratic Party leaders are banking on changing demography for a brighter destiny.

But rumors of white America’s demise have been greatly exaggerated. That’s because the prevailing definition of whiteness is stubbornly stuck in the past.

It was 2000 when the Census Bureau first projected an end to the white majority of the population in 2059. Four years later, it revised that date to 2050. Then in 2008, it told the public that the passing of the white majority would occur in 2042. At this abrupt rate of change, some anxious whites might see displacement as an imminent threat.

In fact, the Census Bureau projects no fewer than six futures for the white population based on various definitions of whiteness. The most touted set of projections adopts the most exclusive definition, restricting the white population to those who self-identify as white and also no other race or ethnicity. Under this definition, whites are indeed in numerical decline.

But this doesn’t reflect the increasingly fluid and inclusive way that many Americans now regard racial and ethnic backgrounds. Mixed-race parentage is growing more common, and a rapidly growing number of people choose more than one racial or ethnic category to describe themselves on the census…

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Why We Need To Know The Story Of Whiteness

Posted in Articles, History, Media Archive, Slavery, United States on 2017-10-31 20:18Z by Steven

Why We Need To Know The Story Of Whiteness

Blavity
2017-10-31

Fanshen Cox DiGiovanni


Photo: Shutterstock

Every year around our birthdays, our mom tells my brother and me the story of our births. This is the gift I look forward to most. Origin stories are important. They literally root us. Not everyone has full access to their origin story, however. Perhaps the most tragic end result of enslavement in the Americas is that many of our origin stories have been lost, manipulated and erased. Yet, we insist on learning about and from our past to direct our own futures, as seen by the new National Museum of African American History and Culture.

One origin story we have access to — but that has not been fully told — is the story of Whiteness. How did White people become White?

When I say the story of Whiteness, I do not mean a story about a person, hero or villain who happens to be White. We have plenty of those. I’m talking about the period between 1619 — with the arrival of the first Africans to Virginia — and some 60 years later when laws created hierarchies based on an invented concept called ‘White.’ There are a lot of enslavement narratives, but why don’t we have films and TV shows about who counted as White at the time, and, most importantly: why?…

Read the entire article here.

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Race and Popular Fantasy Literature: Habits of Whiteness

Posted in Books, Communications/Media Studies, Literary/Artistic Criticism, Media Archive, Monographs on 2016-07-16 15:06Z by Steven

Race and Popular Fantasy Literature: Habits of Whiteness

Routledge
2016
224 pages
1 B/W Illus.

Helen Young, Honorary Associate
Department of English
University of Sydney

This book illuminates the racialized nature of twenty-first century Western popular culture by exploring how discourses of race circulate in the Fantasy genre. It examines not only major texts in the genre, but also the impact of franchises, industry, editorial and authorial practices, and fan engagements on race and representation. Approaching Fantasy as a significant element of popular culture, it visits the struggles over race, racism, and white privilege that are enacted within creative works across media and the communities which revolve around them. While scholars of Science Fiction have explored the genre’s racialized constructs of possible futures, this book is the first examination of Fantasy to take up the topic of race in depth. The book’s interdisciplinary approach, drawing on Literary, Cultural, Fan, and Whiteness Studies, offers a cultural history of the anxieties which haunt Western popular culture in a century eager to declare itself post-race. The beginnings of the Fantasy genre’s habits of whiteness in the twentieth century are examined, with an exploration of the continuing impact of older problematic works through franchising, adaptation, and imitation. Young also discusses the major twenty-first century sub-genres which both re-use and subvert Fantasy conventions. The final chapter explores debates and anti-racist praxis in authorial and fan communities. With its multi-pronged approach and innovative methodology, this book is an important and original contribution to studies of race, Fantasy, and twenty-first century popular culture.

Table of Contents

  • Introduction: Re-thinking Genre, Thinking About Race
  • 1. Founding Fantasy: J. R. R. Tolkien and Robert E. Howard
  • 2. Forming Habits: Derivation, Imitation, and Adaptation
  • 3. The Real Middle Ages: Gritty Fantasy
  • 4. Orcs and Otherness: Monsters on Page and Screen
  • 5. Popular Culture Postcolonialism
  • 6. Relocating Roots: Urban Fantasy
  • 7. Breaking Habits and Digital Communication
  • Afterword
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